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Aussies recall big guns for NZ one-dayers

NZ NewswireNZ Newswire 23/11/2016 Rob Forsaith

Steve Smith, David Warner, Mitchell Starc, Josh Hazlewood and Matthew Wade will switch formats on the eve of Australia's first Test against Pakistan, having been included in the ODI squad announced on Wednesday.

Next month's three-match ODI series against New Zealand, sandwiched between the two three-Test series against South Africa and Pakistan, will deliver the latest reminder of the cramped cricket calender.

Oft-injured express paceman Pat Cummins will play his first international game for Australia in almost 15 months, while 24-year-old allrounder Hilton Cartwright is set to make his ODI debut against the Black Caps.

But national selectors and Cricket Australia high-performance manager Pat Howard have once again been pitched into an awkward juggling act ahead of the first Test against Pakistan, which starts on December 15 in Brisbane.

Australia face their trans-Tasman rivals at home on December 4, 6 and 9. Those one-dayers clash with a Sheffield Shield round starting on December 5.

The advent of the Big Bash League means those three Shield games will be the final chance for Test hopefuls to impress in the whites before Australia face Pakistan in Tests at the Gabba, MCG and SCG.

That list is headlined by axed allrounder Mitch Marsh, South Australia skipper Travis Head and excitement machine Glenn Maxwell, who were all included in the 14-man ODI squad named on Wednesday.

Maxwell was overlooked for Australia's past two one-day tours, while allrounder James Faulkner is also back after missing the 5-0 series loss to South Africa because of a calf injury.

Rounding out the squad are legspinner Adam Zampa, opener Aaron Finch and veteran batsman George Bailey.

Captain Smith and coach Darren Lehmann have both expressed concerns about the helter-skelter schedule recently, while Cricket Australia boss James Sutherland has declared he wants the national side to be playing less cricket.

Sutherland last year signed off on an agreement with New Zealand Cricket, which coincided with the deal for the inaugural day-night Test, to reinstate a regular Chappell-Hadlee series.

The agreement was to stage six trans-Tasman ODI series in the space of four years, with New Zealand hosting four and Australia two.

The second series in that deal is on the eve of Australia's four-Test tour of India, complicating their preparations for that challenging assignment.

The schedule is a catch-22 for selectors.

They were criticised for resting Starc and Hazlewood from the trip to South Africa in October, with Proteas skipper Faf du Plessis suggesting it was a mistake and gave his side a leg up for ensuing Test series.

Australia ODI squad: Steve Smith (capt), David Warner, Aaron Finch, George Bailey, Travis Head, Glenn Maxwell, Mitch Marsh, James Faulkner, Matthew Wade, Adam Zampa, Hilton Cartwright, Pat Cummins, Mitchell Starc, Josh Hazlewood.

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