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PM's XI side revealed: Hodge, Lee and Bird head to Manuka

Brad Hodge.

Brad Hodge. Photo: Brendon Thorne

Brad Hodge will get a chance to press his claims for the Twenty20 World Cup after being selected in the PM's XI team to take on England at Manuka Oval on Tuesday.

Fast bowling great Brett Lee will captain a star-studded side containing five players who have represented Australia including Hodge and fringe Test paceman Jackson Bird.

Hodge has been in splendid form for the Melbourne Stars in the Big Bash League, and is in contention for a return to the national team in the shortest format of the game.

Brett Lee in action for the Sixers.

Brett Lee in action for the Sixers. Photo: Matt King

The 39-year-old is considered one of the unluckiest players in Australian history, having played just six Tests at an average of more than 55.

He is now a Twenty20 specialist and is ideally suited to the shortest format of the game.

Despite entering the latter stages of his career, Hodge has shown he can be a valuable asset for Australia with his experience and ability to find the boundaries.

Jackson Bird celebrates a wicket with the Stars.

Jackson Bird celebrates a wicket with the Stars. Photo: Robert Prezioso

At the other end of the scale is his Stars teammate Bird, who is eager to prove to national selectors he can return to the Test arena.

Bird made a stunning entry on to the international scene before the 27-year-old was sidelined with a back injury.

He claimed four wickets in his comeback game for the Stars last month and another strong performance in the 50-over match against the Poms in Canberra will help his chances of getting on the plane for next month's tour of South Africa.

Fellow fast bowler Ben Cutting and hard-hitting batsman Chris Lynn will be given the chance to push their claims.

Cutting has played three one-day internationals, while Lynn's dynamic striking in the BBL for the Brisbane Heat has put him on the radar for higher honours.

Alister McDermott, the son of former quick and current Australian bowling coach Craig, has also earned selection in the invitational side.

Eastlake and ACT Comets batsman Michael Spaseski is in the team, while Tuggeranong spinner Shane Devoy is 12th man.

National selection panel chairman John Inverarity said the team represents a blend of experience and excitement.

“Brett Lee and Brad Hodge bring leadership and experience to the team and will be great drawcards,’’ Inverarity said.

“Chris Lynn has been in excellent form this season in all forms of the game and Jackson Bird is recovering well from injury and we are keen to increase his workload.

“We have every confidence that this team will perform well and that the players selected will represent the Prime Minister’s XI with pride.”

PM's XI squad for match against England at Manuka Oval on Tuesday, January 14, 2.20pm: Brett Lee (captain), Jackson Bird, Ben Cutting, Peter Handscomb, Brad Hodge, Chris Lynn, Alister McDermott, James Muirhead, Luke Pomersbach, Clive Rose, Michael Spaseski, Shane Devoy (12th man).

2 comments so far

  • Great, all it need to top the day is for Toxic Tony to make an appearance as guest ump in his budgies. Yep a man of the people!!!

    Commenter
    David
    Location
    WA
    Date and time
    January 09, 2014, 2:12PM
    • Alyce Perry would have been a good wildcard selection and would have done a good job vs the boys.

      Commenter
      Mike
      Date and time
      January 09, 2014, 10:18PM

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