Australia recall spinner Krejza for Perth game

Perth, February 3, 2011

Forgotten spinner Jason Krejza has emerged as a candidate for the World Cup after being recalled to the Australian one-day team on Thursday. The attacking off-spinner has not played for Australia for more than two years, but was added to the squad for Sunday s seventh and final one-day international against England at the WACA Ground in Perth.

The recall comes as Australia monitors the fitness of its two premier limited-overs spinners ahead of the World Cup, which is less than three weeks away. Off-spinner Nathan Hauritz, overlooked for the entire Ashes series, was named in the original 15-man squad for the World Cup, but dislocated his shoulder in the second ODI last month and is in considerable doubt for the tournament.

Tasmanian left-arm finger spinner Xavier Doherty was then called up to replace Hauritz for the remaining ODIs and put on standby for the World Cup. However, he too has succumbed to injury, a back problem prematurely ending his one-day series, with the Australian squad due to leave for India next week.

Krejza famously took 12 wickets in his Test debut in India, but then a month later was banished after a poor Test against South Africa at the WACA in December 2008.

Australian chairman of selectors said the 28-year-old deserved his opportunity after some excellent recent form in domestic limited overs cricket. “Jason is a very skilled spinner and more than capable batsman who has already enjoyed international success and we are sure he will seize the opportunity,” Hilditch said.

Already ahead 5-1 in the series, the home side has made a number of changes for the final match. Steve Smith will miss the game due to a hip muscle problem, while captain Michael Clarke and star all-rounder Shane Watson will both be rested. “Both Michael Clarke and Shane Watson have had a very heavy workload this summer and as key players going into the ICC Cricket World Cup a decision has been made that they will not play in Perth for the final match of this series,” Hilditch said.

“Shane and Michael will remain in Sydney until attending the Allan Border Medal on Monday which provides them a few days at home before departing for India next Wednesday.”

Western Australian batsman Adam Voges has been recalled, while Cameron White will take over the captaincy.

Australian captain Ricky Ponting has resumed training after a broken finger suffered during the Ashes in a bid to prove his fitness for the World Cup, while veteran batsman Mike Hussey is battling to be available after surgery on a major hamstring injury just last month.

The injury-hit Shaun Marsh, on standby for Hussey, has also been sidelined by a hamstring strain.

AFP