• Waugh laments Australia’s ‘biggest shock’

    Former Australia batsman and national selector Mark Waugh has questioned Australia’s decision to omit wicketkeeper-batsman Alex Carey from the squad for the Ashes series.

    Fellow wicketkeeper-batsman Matthew Wade was preferred in the 17-man squad for the five Tests against England. Carey, meanwhile, was not afforded graduation to the longest format of the international game despite a superb stretch of form in the recent World Cup.

    ‘Got to be kidding re Alex Carey. For me Alex missing the squad is the biggest shock particularly after his batting during the World Cup and being the second best gloveman,’ said Waugh on social media.

    Ex-skipper Mark Taylor rued the absence of middle-order batsman Kurtis Patterson and opener Joe Burns. The duo effectively lost out to the returning Cameron Bancroft, whose suspension for last year’s involvement in ball-tampering has ended, and the South African-born Marnus Labuschagne.

    ‘I was disappointed Kurtis didn’t make the squad. You can’t help but feel a little bit sorry for both him and Joe,’ added Taylor.

    ‘It’s a sign of the times. The selectors are picking on recent form rather than their last Test matches, and I guess you could say that Bancroft, Labuschagne, and Wade won that battle of the batsmen.’

    The first Ashes Test will start at Edgbaston in Birmingham on Thursday.

    Photo: Getty Images

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