MELBOURNE: Veteran batter David Warner and frontline pace bowling trio Pat Cummins, Mitchell Starc and Josh Hazlewood will skip the limited-overs formats of Australia's first cricket tour to Pakistan since 1998.
All four will play in the three-test series that starts March 4 before leaving to participate in the Indian Premier League. Glenn Maxwell has also been given time off and wasn't included in Australia's 16-man squad for the three one-day internationals and the Twenty20 International in Pakistan.
Australia's selection committee chief George Bailey said with so much international cricket coming up across three formats, selectors needed to "continue to be quite pragmatic in how we approach each series". The IPL is set to start April 2.
Australia is scheduled to play test matches against Pakistan from March 4-8 at Rawalpindi, March 12-16 at Karachi and March 21-25 at Lahore before the three ODIs in Rawalpindi on March 29, 31 and April 2 and the T20 on April 5. "We've worked really hard with our multi-format players over a long period, not just this series coming up and leading into the IPL," Bailey said on Tuesday.
"One of the things we're keen to ensure is we maintain having our best players playing for Australia for as long as possible. We're constantly managing and working with them around their personal situations to get what they need and continue to get what they need," he added.
Australia will have two wicketkeepers for the white ball matches, with test gloveman Alex Carey staying on and Josh Inglis joining the squad for the limited-overs portion of the tour. Steve Smith, who missed half of Australia's recent T20 series win over Sri Lanka after sustaining concussion, is expected to play a full part in the Pakistan tour.
Australia's limited-overs squad:
Aaron Finch (captain), Sean Abbott, Ashton Agar, Jason Behrendorff, Alex Carey, Nathan Ellis, Cameron Green, Travis Head, Josh Inglis, Marnus Labuschagne, Mitchell Marsh, Ben McDermott, Kane Richardson, Steve Smith, Marcus Stoinis and Adam Zampa.