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Ashton Agar Released From Australia Test Squad, Will Play Domestic Cricket: Report

Last Updated: February 22, 2023, 11:22 IST

Ashton Agar was benched even as two spinners were given debuts. (AFP Photo)

Ashton Agar will return to Australia to play domestic cricket but may be back for the ODI series against India

Ashton Agar will be heading home after having played no part in the ongoing India vs Australia Test series which the tourists trail 0-2. Agar was expected to partner Nathan Lyon on the spin-friendly Indian pitches but Australia preferred a couple of debutants ahead of the spin-bowling allrounder who last played in the Sydney Test against South Africa in January.

Todd Murphy, an offspinner, made his international debut in the series opener in Nagpur where he claimed a seven-for while in Delhi, left-arm orthodox Matthew Kuhnemann made his Test bow having flown to India days before the match was to start.

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According to ESPNcricinfo, no additions will be made to the already depleted Australia squad from which Josh Hazlewood and David Warner have already been removed owing to various injuries. Hazlewood has failed to recover from Achilles injury while Warner fractured his elbow during the Delhi Test.

Agar will be playing for Western Australia in their next Sheffield Shield fixture slated to begin from March 2 now. The third Test starts from March in Indore with Australia trailing the four-match series 0-2.

Australia legspinner Mitchell Swepson had flown home for the birth of his first child before the second Test but will now return to India to link up with the Test squad.

Pat Cummins is currently in Australia as well to attend to a family medical concern but is expected to be back in time before the third Test. In case, he’s unavailable, Steve Smith is reported to have been kept on the standby to lead in Indore.

According to the report, Australia selector Tony Dodemaide held a meeting with Agar on Tuesday following which the decision to send back the left-arm spinner was taken.

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However, it’s possible the 29-year-old could return to India for a three-match ODI series scheduled to be held in March.

Interestingly, Dodemaide had told Australian media before the Delhi Test that Agar’s non-selection was due to “his red-ball bowling is not quite where he wants it to be.”

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