Five-time champions Australia have finalised their 15-man squad for the 2023 World Cup, set to begin on October 5th. The Men in Yellow had initially named an 18-member provisional squad, but have now trimmed it to 15, omitting Nathan Ellis, Tanveer Sangha, and Aaron Hardie from their ranks as they look to seal their 6th World Cup title.
Test star Marnus Labuschagne has also missed out on a World Cup berth after some inconsistent performances in the format in recent months. Right-arm speedster Sean Abbott has instead sneaked into the squad and will be a frontline pace-bowling option alongside Mitchell Starc, Pat Cummins, and Josh Hazlewood.
Chief Selector George Bailey expressed full confidence in Steve Smith, Mitchell Starc, Glenn Maxwell, and Pat Cummins returning to full fitness for the showpiece event. With Australia set to play 8 ODIs before the World Cup, the former middle-order batter feels they have enough time to build for the tournament. As quoted by the ICC, he said:
"Pat Cummins, Steve Smith, Mitchell Starc and Glenn Maxwell are on track in their return to play programs. All are well placed to come back online in the coming weeks and potentially for selection in the upcoming series against India. There are eight one-day matches still to play in South Africa and India before the final squad is due to be declared. They are followed by two World Cup practice games, which offers plenty of opportunity to continue the build for the tournament."
After the five-game ODI series against South Africa, the Men in Yellow will play three more 50-over games against India. Cummins and co. open their 2023 World Cup campaign against India on October 8th in Chennai.
Australia's 2023 World Cup squad:
Pat Cummins (c), Steve Smith, Alex Carey, Josh Inglis, Sean Abbott, Ashton Agar, Cameron Green, Josh Hazlewood, Travis Head, Mitch Marsh, Glenn Maxwell, Marcus Stoinis, David Warner, Adam Zampa, Mitchell Starc.