Injured captain Michael Clarke has been named in a 12-man Australian squad for the first Test against India and is set to make his comeback in the two-day match against the tourists in Adelaide starting Friday.
The Test squad is Clarke (capt), Brad Haddin (vice-capt), Ryan Harris, Josh Hazlewood, Mitchell Johnson, Nathan Lyon, Mitchell Marsh, Chris Rogers, Peter Siddle, Steve Smith, David Warner, Shane Watson.
Clarke has been named subject to fitness as he continues to undergo treatment for the hamstring injury that forced him out of Australia’s ODI series against South Africa as well as his ongoing back condition.
The plan is for Clarke to resume running over the coming days.
If successful he will play for the CA XI in its second two-day tour match against the touring Indian side at the Adelaide Oval from Friday.
Should Clarke play that match and recover well he will take his place in the Test side.
Selectors will consider calling in a replacement batsman to the Test squad if Clarke does not recover sufficiently.
Australian team doctor Peter Brukner said: “We still have some time before having to make a final decision on Michael’s fitness.
“As you would expect, he’s desperate to play and we are doing all that we can to ensure he can do just that.
“Over the coming days the plan is to build him up so that he can resume running with the ultimate aim of getting him some high-intensity match practice ahead of the first Test.”
Queensland paceman Ryan Harris returns to the Test squad following his recovery from knee surgery and will play for Queensland again in the Sheffield Shield this week as part of his build up to the Test.
Uncapped New South Wales paceman Josh Hazlewood has been rewarded for strong recent performances with inclusion in the Test squad for the first time since 2012-13.
Hazlewood claimed nine wickets in the ODI Series against South Africa.
Mitchell Starc and Glenn Maxwell have been omitted from Australia’s last Test side that faced Pakistan in the United Arab Emirates.