Shane Watson has relinquished his vice captaincy from Australia as he plans to focus on his batting. Watson hasn’t scored a Test century in the past couple of years and from 2011-13 he managed only 627 runs at an average of 24.11. In lieu of Watson’s resignation, the Australian selectors have named Brad Haddin as Michael Clarke’s deputy for the Ashes series that starts on July 11 at Trent Bridge.
Haddin hasn’t been in the best of form with the bat lately and has been under pressure to perform with Matthew Wade eyeing his spot who will be his back up for the tour of England. It had taken seven years for Haddin to regain the Test spot following Adam Gilchrist’s retirement and he hasn’t been able to cement his place in the squad. Shaun Marsh, who performed brilliantly in the Sheffield Shield matches, has been left out of the Ashes squad due to lack of fitness.
Left arm pacer Mitchell Johnson too has been left out of the Ashes Series following a poor tour of India. But all rounder James Faulkner has been following his good showing in the Big Bash League and the IPL. Peter Siddle, James Pattinson and Mitchell Starc have retained their place in the squad and will be expected to deliver the goods as the wickets in England provide both pace and bounce. The surprise selection was that of Jackson Bird, who missed the Test series in India.