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Aussies forced to have two keepers for World Cup

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Defending Champions, Australia have been forced to name two specialist wicket keepers in their 15-man squad for the World Cup. Brad Haddin has been named as the back-up for Adam Gilchrist, who is going to stay back in Australia with his wife expected to deliver his third child next month.

The Aussies have also picked the injured Andrew Symonds, who would take time for his operated shoulder to heel. The ICC had stated that Symonds could be named in the squad and if he cannot regain his fitness then a replacement player would be allowed. Australia’s new express fast bowler – Shaun Tait has forced his way into the team. Stuart Clark has been ignored and so is Cameron White.

Among the batsmen, young Brad Hodge has earned his place following his superb performances in the recently concluded CB Series. The Aussies also have the upcoming Mitchell Johnson in a squad that is dominated by pacemen. Chinaman bowler, Brad Hogg is the lone specialist spinner if at all Symonds is ruled out.

Australia is currently touring New Zealand for a 3-ODI Series. Ricky Ponting has been rested for this tour along with Adam Gilchrist. Michael Hussey will be leading the team for the first time. Opportunities have been given to the uncapped Adam Vogues, a top order batsman, Cameron White and Phil Jaques who would be the back-up for Michael Clarke, who is doubtful with a hip injury.

Adam Gilchrist might miss the first three weeks of the tournament due to his wife’s pregnancy. Brad Haddin, his replacement is certainly an exciting batsman who had performed quite well in the limited opportunities he had got like in the DLF Cup in Kuala Lumpur. The Aussies fly out of Sydney to the Caribbean on the 28th of this month. They are placed in Group A along with South Africa and minnows – Netherlands and Scotland. Their first game is against Scotland on the second day of the tournament at St. Kitts.

Australia World Cup Squad : Ricky Ponting (Captain), Adam Gilchrist (Wicket Keeper), Matthew Hayden, Michael Clarke, Brad Hodge, Andrew Symonds, Michael Hussey, Brad Haddin (Wicket Keeper), Shane Watson, Brett Lee, Brad Hogg, Mitchell Johnson, Nathan Bracken, Glenn McGrath, Shaun Tait