Xavier Bartlett rested, Josh Hazlewood returns as Australia shuffles squad for 2nd ODI vs West Indies

The Steve Smith-led Australian side will be aiming to maintain the winning run and seal the series in the 2nd ODI at the iconic Sydney Cricket Ground.

Sarah Andrew
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Australia has announced changes to their squad for the second ODI against West Indies, scheduled for Sunday at the Sydney Cricket Ground. While the first match saw a convincing victory for the Aussies, the team management has opted for a strategic shuffle, prioritizing both player workload management and providing opportunities to rising talents.

The most notable absence is Xavier Bartlett, the young pace bowler who stole the show on his international debut at the MCG. His impressive 4-wicket haul was instrumental in Australia's win, but the team has decided to rest him for the second ODI to manage his workload effectively. Bartlett had a back injury last year and has not played too any first-class or one-day game and hence, there is no merit in pushing him. Despite missing this match, Bartlett is expected to return for the third ODI in Canberra, demonstrating the team's long-term commitment to nurturing his talent.

Head released, Hazlewood added

Another change sees Travis Head being released from both the ODI and T20I squads for the remainder of the series. Head struggled in the first ODI, failing to contribute significantly with the bat. This decision has been made in a bid to allow the young Jake Fraser McGurk, who is all set to make his debut tomorrow. His impressive performances in domestic cricket had earlier earned him a call-up.

To bolster the bowling attack in Bartlett's absence, the experienced Josh Hazlewood has been added to the squad for the second ODI. Hazlewood's return brings a wealth of experience and firepower to the bowling line-up, further strengthening Australia's bowling unit. 

These changes highlight Cricket Australia's commitment to a strategic approach to player management. While prioritizing winning the series, the team is also focused on long-term development and ensuring individual players don't get overburdened. By rotating the squad and providing opportunities to youngsters, Australia is aiming to build a well-rounded and sustainable team for the future.

Looking ahead to the second ODI, Australia will be keen to put up another dominant performance and seal the series. The return of Hazlewood and the potential debut of Fraser-McGurk provide added depth and excitement to the team. The Windies on the other hand, will look to bounce back from their defeat and put up a better show in front of what should be a sell-out crowd in Sydney.

Travis Head AUSvsWI Xavier Bartlett Josh Hazlewood