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Australia Names Four Spinners And A Debutante In Test Squad For India Tour

Young leg-spinner Mitchell Swepson and all-rounder Glenn Maxwell are the standouts.
Australian all-rounder Glen Maxwell is heading to India for the upcoming Test Series tour.
Australian all-rounder Glen Maxwell is heading to India for the upcoming Test Series tour.

With four spin bowlers, a debutante and three recalls, the 16-man squad that Australia has named for the upcoming Test tour of India is nothing short of interesting.

Debutante Mitchell Swepson and all-rounder Glenn Maxwell are the standouts in the lineup announced for the Qantas Tour of India commencing in February, in a team selectors have labelled as flexible.

Interim National Selector Trevor Hohns told media on Sunday that the lineup will cater for the unknown conditions of pitches in India.

"We don't know what pitch conditions we will come up against in each of the venues but wanted to have flexibility and options available to us," Hohns said in a press conference.

"We know India is an incredibly tough place to tour and have success in, with most International teams struggling to adapt to the conditions, but we have chosen a squad which we believe will work really hard in its endeavours to perform well and give a good account of itself in the sub-continent."

So who exactly is this Mitchell Swepson?

He's a young leg-spinner from Queensland who's taken 23 wickets while playing for the Brisbane Heat in the domestic Big Bash League and who selectors believe will suit pitches on the subcontinent with an attacking attitude to his bowling.

"(Swepson) is an exciting young leg-spinner that has come through the pathway system," Hohns said.

"We feel he has a lot of potential and want to see him take his opportunity in conditions that should suit him should he get a chance."

Glenn Maxwell is also an interesting addition to the squad with his recall to the Test side after performing in the first One Day International match against Pakistan on Friday and chasing the possibility of filling the number six spot as a batsman in India.

Maxwell will be very familiar with the pitches in India after having played multiple seasons and over 40 matches in the Indian Premier League 20-over format and knocking up a high score of 95 and a strike rate of 161.61.

If you're not sure of the significance of those numbers, it means he'll be an exciting one to watch with the bat come February.

Maxwell's all-rounder counterpart Mitchell Marsh also gained a recall into the squad along with his brother, batsman Shaun Marsh, spinner Ashton Agar and tall seamer Jackson Bird who joins as one of the three fast bowlers to make the team.

The last time Australia won a Test series in India was back in 2004, which broke a 35-year drought for the Aussies against India on the subcontinent, however the upcoming tour will be a tough one with Australia only ever having won one of nine Test series away from home.

The Test series consists of four matches and will kick off in Pune on February 23. Check out the remaining inclusions to Australia's 16-man squad below.

Full Squad: Steve Smith (c), David Warner (vc), Ashton Agar, Jackson Bird, Peter Handscomb, Josh Hazlewood, Usman Khawaja, Nathan Lyon, Mitchell Marsh, Shaun Marsh, Glenn Maxwell, Stephen O'Keefe, Matthew Renshaw, Mitchell Starc, Mitchell Swepson, Matthew Wade.


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