Men's Ashes

Ashes batting shootout a race in 17

Ashes hopefuls to get a chance in either county cricket, the World Cup or Australia A's tour of the UK


16 April 2019, 07:46 AM AEST

Ashes hopefuls in Australia A squad

Selectors will have the chance to look at up to 17 batting options in England this year before settling on Australia's batting line up for the first Test.

Selectors on Monday revealed their squads for the Australia A tour of England that will run concurrently with the World Cup, but opted to leave the majority of county players with their clubs in the lead up to the Ashes.

In all, 17 Australian batsmen will be in the UK in June and July, across the one-day World Cup, county cricket and Australia A games, and given the chance to press their claims for an Ashes berth.

Cameron Bancroft was not picked in the Australia A squad and will instead continue as captain of Durham, while Matt Renshaw (Kent) and incumbents Joe Burns (Lancashire) and Marnus Labuschagne (Glamorgan) will also stay in the County Championship during the A series.

Marcus Harris - who is favoured to partner David Warner in the Ashes - is the only full-time opener in the four-day Australia A squad, where Kurtis Patterson, Will Pucovski, Travis Head, Peter Handscomb and Mitch Marsh will join him in the fight for Ashes spots.

Matthew Wade has also been given a shot at returning to the Test team through the A squad after missing national selection last summer.

Warner, Steve Smith, Usman Khawaja, Marcus Stoinis, Glenn Maxwell and Shaun Marsh will also feature in the World Cup, the final of which is just two weeks before the first Test at Edgbaston begins on August 1.

Following the World Cup, selectors will announce Australia and Australia A squads to play a tour match beginning July 23 in Hampshire, before the final Ashes squad is announced just days before the first Test.

"We made it well known to everybody around the country that we may leave players who have county contracts playing county cricket," chief selector Trevor Hohns said.

"That will not affect their chances of being chosen in the Ashes squad or the Australia-Australia A game. That's been very made clear to them."

The Australia A sides will play five one-dayers against England county teams in June and July, which will act as cover should injury strike the World Cup squad, while the four-day squad then faces Sussex and the England Lions.

Australia's bowling line-up for the Ashes is far clearer, with Josh Hazlewood left to return from a back injury in the A squads.

James Pattinson also looks to be in the mix after being pulled from his county side Nottinghamshire to play for Australia A, where he will be joined by Jackson Bird, Chris Tremain and Michael Neser.

Australia's frontline bowlers of Mitchell Starc, Pat Cummins, Jhye Richardson and Nathan Lyon will all play in the World Cup, while Peter Siddle (Essex) and Dan Worrall (Gloucestershire) will remain with their county sides.

Australia A tour of the UK

Australia A one-day squad: Travis Head (c), Matthew Wade, Will Pucovski, Peter Handscomb, Ashton Turner, Mitch Marsh (vc), D'Arcy Short, Kurtis Patterson, Ashton Agar, Michael Neser, James Pattinson, Josh Hazlewood (vc), Kane Richardson, Sean Abbott

Australia A four-day squad: Tim Paine (c), Marcus Harris, Kurtis Patterson, Will Pucovski, Travis Head (vc), Peter Handscomb, Matthew Wade, Mitch Marsh, Michael Neser, Jon Holland, James Pattinson, Jackson Bird, Josh Hazlewood (vc), Chris Tremain

One-day fixtures:

June 20: Australia A v Northamptonshire, The County Ground, Northamptonshire

June 23: Australia A v Derbyshire, County Ground, Derby

June 25: Australia A v Worcestershire, New Road, Worcester

June 30: Australia A v Gloucestershire, Bristol Country Ground, Bristol

July 2: Australia A v Gloucestershire, Bristol Country Ground, Bristol

Four-day fixtures:

July 7-10: Australia A v Sussex, Arundel Castle Cricket Ground, Arundel

July 13-16: Australia A v England Lions, The Spitfire Ground, Canterbury

July 23-26: Australia v Australia A, Ageas Bowl, Hampshire