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Symonds named in Australia’s ICC Twenty20 squad

Andrew Symonds and three uncapped players were included in Australia’s preliminary 30-man squad for the ICC Twenty20 world championship in England in June.

cricket Updated: Apr 03, 2009 11:26 IST

Andrew Symonds and three uncapped players were included on Friday in Australia’s preliminary 30-man squad for the ICC Twenty20 world championship in England in June.

Symonds may get another chance to play for his country after a wretched season, blighted by injury, poor form and controversy in addition to undergoing counselling for personal problems.

The controversial allrounder has not played for Australia since the Boxing Day Test against South Africa in Melbourne but was included in the squad, along with recalled batsman Brad Hodge, recovering fast bowler Brett Lee, spinner Jason Krejza and speedster Shaun Tait.

The three uncapped players are Western Australian spinner Aaron Heal, Victoria batsman Rob Quiney and South Australian wicketkeeper Graham Manou.

“I’m grateful that I’ve got the chance to get back to playing for Australia again,” Symonds said in a statement released by Queensland Cricket.

“Hopefully, the boys go well in South Africa tonight (Friday) and for the rest of the series because I’d love to be back in the rooms with them again sometime down the track.”

Cricket Australia Chief Executive James Sutherland said the selectors had been advised Symonds had reached a point in his counselling where it was appropriate to consider him for international selection, subject to fitness and form.

“Cricket Australia and Andrew have been speaking, as have members of the team leadership group, and we are satisfied he is committed to doing the things needed of an Australian international cricketer,” Sutherland said in a CA statement.

Chairman of selectors, Andrew Hilditch, said:“ At his best Andrew is one of the most dynamic Twenty20 players in the world and his progress will be monitored leading up to the selection of the final 15.”

Hilditch said selectors had recognised the form of squad newcomers Heal, Quiney and Manou.

“Most of the players chosen already have international experience, but the squad does include Heal, who has bowled particularly well in one-day cricket this year for Western Australia,” Hilditch said.

“Heal’s inclusion is recognition of the significant impact spinners are having in Twenty20 cricket worldwide.

“We have also chosen Manou as a second wicket-keeper. Graham has had an outstanding season and was named as the wicket-keeper in the Australian Cricketers’ Association teams of the year in all three forms of the game.”

Hilditch said the squad also includes Tait, Watson, Lee and Marsh, who are all recovering from injuries.

First Published: Apr 03, 2009 11:18 IST