Six changes have been made to the Australian squad following their embarrassing series loss against the Proteas in Hobart.
For the third and final match, a day-nighter in Adelaide, four possible debutants are included, while Matthew Wade, the wicketkeeper who last played a Test for Australia against India at Delhi in March 2013, and Jackson Bird have been recalled.
Dropped from that Hobart team are Joe Burns, Callum Ferguson, Peter Nevill, Joe Mennie and Adam Voges, although he at least has the the excuse of concussion, suffered last week after being struck on the helmet in a domestic match. Mitchell Marsh was omitted from the squad,
The new players are batsmen Matt Renshaw, likely to open with Warner, Nic Maddison and Peter Handscomb, along with pace bowler Chadd Sayers.
There may have been another change too if not for a calf injury to the left-arm spinner Steve O’Keefe, who had up until Saturday been favoured to oust the incumbent the spin bowler Nathan Lyon, who has struggled notably for wickets or impact.
At the end of the Hobart match, coach Darren Lehmann was brutal in his assessment, saying only four players were guaranteed their places in the next match. The selectors, under the new convenor Trevor Hohns, seemed to agree.
While mentioning Wade, Hohns commented: ‘He’s obviously seen as a tough competitor and that is what we’re looking for in our players now, and we want them to get out there now and have a fair crack at this and go forward with that. We don’t expect an immediate turnaround, but we’ve got a bit of faith in these guys now.’
Squad David Warner, Matt Renshaw, Usman Khawaja, Steven Smith, Peter Handscomb, Nic Maddinson, Matthew Wade (wk), Mitchell Starc, Josh Hazlewood, Nathan Lyon, Jackson Bird, Chadd Sayers.
Photo: Ryan Pierse/Cricket Australia/Getty Images