• Cricket Australia on Wednesday announced the T20I squad for New Zealand tour.

  • The Aussie team will be coached in New Zealand by Andrew McDonald.

Australia will take three uncapped players on New Zealand tour for a five-match T20I series starting next month, including opening batsman Josh Philippe.

Philippe, 23, is also the second wicketkeeper in an 18-man squad that includes Matthew Wade, who has been dropped from Australia’s Test squad that will concurrently be in South Africa for the three-match series.

The other uncapped players are Sydney Thunder leg-spinner Tanveer Sangha and Hobart Hurricanes speedster Riley Meredith. Philippe and Meredith will be eyeing an international debut having not played on Australia’s limited-overs tour of England in September last year.

Perth Scorchers fast bowlers Jhye Richardson and Jason Behrendorff have also been returned to the squad after recovering well from their respective shoulder and back surgeries.

Ben Oliver, Executive General Manager – National Teams at Cricket Australia, after picking two squads for concurrent tours said: “Cricket Australia is committed to playing our role in international cricket while acknowledging the challenges of the pandemic and ensuring the health and safety of our players, staff and community.”

“The Australian men’s T20I tour of New Zealand and Australian men’s Test tour of South Africa are important to both host boards and we have been working constructively with their respective management teams on the planning for both tours.

“We do not envisage replicating concurrent Australian men’s tours in the future, but we appreciate the need to do so now to assist our friends around the world during this challenging period for international sport and given the additional time requirements of mandatory quarantine periods.”

The Australia squad is set to depart for New Zealand after the 2020-21 BBL final and will have a fortnight in the country to serve their quarantine and practice before the first T20I begins on February 22.

Australia T20I squad for New Zealand tour:

Aaron Finch (c), Ashton Agar, Jason Behrendorff, Mitchell Marsh, Glenn Maxwell, Ben McDermott, Riley Meredith, Josh Philippe, Kane Richardson, Daniel Sams, Tanveer Sangha, D’Arcy Short, Marcus Stoinis, Ashton Turner, Andrew Tye, Matthew Wade, Adam Zampa.

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