Australia v India: Nathan Lyon gets his white-ball chance as BBL specialists earn Twenty20 call-ups

Australia v India: Nathan Lyon gets his white-ball chance as BBL specialists earn Twenty20 call-ups

Australian selectors have rewarded good form in the Big Bash League with maiden call-ups for Travis Head and Andrew Tye and recalls for Chris Lynn, Nathan Lyon and Shaun Tait for next week's three Twenty20s against India.

But George Bailey has missed out on a place in the 17-man squad.

The series will effectively serve as an audition for the World Twenty20, for which a 15-man squad has to be named in early February.

Chief selector Rod Marsh said it was a "no-brainer" to pick Lynn and Head, the top run-scorers in the BBL.

Nathan Lyon has been called into the one-day squad.

Nathan Lyon has been called into the one-day squad.

Photo: Getty Images

"They've both had very good months and they're both hitting the ball magnificently," he said.

"He [Head] has been on the radar for a few years, even when John Inverarity was the national selector. John saw him get a brilliant 90 against Mitchell Johnson in Perth and he put a tick against his name then. He said, 'This kid can play'.

"I've seen quite a lot of him, being based in Adelaide. I've seen some terrific innings, but he's just starting to realise his potential."

Marsh predicted all 17 would get a chance to play against India, especially since Steve Smith and David Warner – and perhaps more – will leave before the end of the series to prepare for Australia's one-day series in New Zealand in early February.

The selectors have also named two changes for the last two matches of the one-day series in Canberra and Sydney on Thursday and Saturday respectively, with Nathan Lyon recalled and David Warner returning after the birth of his second baby. They replace Joel Paris and Usman Khawaja. The exclusion of the latter allows him to play in the BBL semi-finals if Sydney Thunder stay in the top four.

Lyon is the big winner across the two squads, with selectors overcoming their reluctance to give him a chance in all formats.

"He's got such a wonderful record in Test cricket we didn't want to jeopardise that in any way, shape nor form," said Marsh. "He's been a terrific bowler for us in Test match cricket and we certainly didn't want to play him in a few odd one-day games or an odd T20 here or there and for him to start bowling flat and losing that terrific rhythm he's now got.

The bowling attack for the Twenty20s is specifically tailored to the shortest form of the game, with Tye and Boyce in particular T20 specialists. Express-paced Tait, 32, also has a chance to restart his international career, which has been dormant since the 2011 World Cup.

Marsh said West Australian Tye had been rewarded for his consistently good BBL form, and had also been aided by few rival teams having seen him bowl.

Tait, who joined Hobart after being released by Adelaide, has benefited from the absence of Australia's fastest bowler, Mitch Starc, due to injury.

"To be honest, I didn't even know if he was going to play that many games. I [just] knew he was on the [Hurricanes'] list," Marsh said. "He's probably the fastest bowler in the country at the moment, and you do need a bit of pace in T20 cricket."

While Head and Lynn have a golden opportunity to seal top-order positions for the World Twenty20, to be held in India in March, Shane Watson has been given a chance to join them, a decision most likely influenced by his extensive experience in the subcontinent and having been player of the tournament in 2012.

"It was nice to see him get some runs [in the BBL], and he's been a terrific player in India. We'll wait and see with him," Marsh said.

The exclusion of Bailey will most likely be a bitter blow for the former Twenty20 captain, who has worked extensively on his technique over the past year to bolster his case for a recall, particularly by scoring more freely against spin. All-rounder Mitch Marsh is also a notable exclusion from the Twenty20 squad.

Marsh insisted neither was not out of contention for the World T20.

"He [Bailey] has had terrific experience in India as well, so it won't be anything for him to not play in these three T20s and to walk into the side – if, in fact, he is selected. That's the thing. It's going to be a very tough job to get it down to 15."

ODI squad: Steve Smith (c), George Bailey, Scott Boland, James Faulkner, Aaron Finch, John Hastings, Nathan Lyon, Mitch Marsh, Shaun Marsh, Glenn Maxwell, Kane Richardson, Matthew Wade, David Warner.

T20I squad: Aaron Finch (c), Scott Boland, Cameron Boyce, James Faulkner, John Hastings, Travis Head, Nathan Lyon, Chris Lynn, Glenn Maxwell, Shaun Marsh, Kane Richardson, Steve Smith, Shaun Tait, Andrew Tye, Matthew Wade, David Warner, Shane Watson.

Jesse Hogan

Jesse Hogan has been a reporter at The Age since 2004, and has been part of its sports department since 2008. He is primarily focused on cricket and has covered a number of the Australian team's overseas tours, including the 2011 World Cup. He also reports on AFL and soccer.

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