London - Australia captain Michael Clarke has said on Tuesday that the tourists would give
a Test debut to fast-bowling all-rounder James Faulkner and recall
Mitchell Starc as they sought a consolation win in the Ashes finale.
do have a team. We have two changes. Jackson Bird is out and Usman
Khawaja is out so Mitchell Starc comes in and James Faulkner makes his
debut," Clarke told reporters at The Oval on Tuesday, the day before the
match at the south London ground.
The 23-year-old Faulkner
replaces out-of-form batsman Khawaja, who averaged just 19 in three
successive Tests, after Australia coach Darren Lehmann warned his
failing top-order their places were in danger following the team's
latest collapse, which helped England to a 74-run win in the fourth Test
at Durham and an unbeatable 3-0 series lead.
a left-arm fast-medium bowler and right-hand batsman, has played eight
one-day internationals and three Twenty20s but has yet to score a
hundred at any level of senior domestic or international cricket.
is a fighter and a competitor and although he might not look the best
all the time, he will do his best to stay out there and help his partner
make a hundred or bat with the tail to help them through," Clarke said.
better conditions there are for batting, the better bowler he is. I
think he is the right character for this team and you will see how much
talent he's got in this Test match."
All-rounder Shane Watson, who
started the series as an opener before moving to number six, is now set
to bat in the number three position previously occupied by Khawaja.
Meanwhile left-arm quick Starc's curious tour of alternate Tests continued with this latest recall.
played in Australia's 14-run first Ashes Test defeat at Trent Bridge,
was dropped for the 347-run second Test loss at Lord's only to be
recalled again for the drawn third Test at Old Trafford and left out
once more at Durham.
But he has now got his chance again after paceman Bird failed to impress in the fourth Test.
saw Starc criticise his in-out treatment by the selectors, with the
bowler telling Australia's Fairfax Media: "I guess it would be nice to
get a few games back to back and get that rhythm.
"But to have a
chance at that consistency that everyone talks about -- 'you've got to
be more consistent' -- well, it's a bit hard when you play one game and
Clarke, responding to Starc's remarks, said:
"Again it's not about the individual player. My comments stand that if
you perform well enough you won't be dropped."
decisions by coach Darren Lehmann and wicketkeeping great Rodney Marsh,
the two Australia selectors on tour -- national selector John Inverarity
is in England but as a 'consultant' and to give a casting vote if
required -- means 17 out of the 18-strong squad will have played in this
The only exception is reserve wicketkeeper Matthew
Wade, who was being considered as a batsman only at The Oval, having
scored hundreds in two of Australia's last four wins.
Australia having gone eight Tests without a victory, a run dating back
to their 4-0 series loss in India earlier this year, Wade was unable to
force his way back in.
England, bidding for a first 4-0 home Ashes
series win, will have to make at least one enforced change after
all-rounder Tim Bresnan was ruled out with a season-ending back injury.
However, England captain Alastair Cook said earlier Tuesday he would not announce his side until Wednesday's toss.
England: Alastair Cook (captain), Joe Root, Jonathan Trott, Kevin Pietersen, Ian Bell, Jonny Bairstow, Matt Prior (wicketkeeper), Stuart Broad, Graeme Swann, James Anderson, Chris Woakes, Chris Tremlett, Steven Finn, Simon Kerrigan
Australia: Chris Rogers, David Warner, Shane Watson, Michael Clarke (captain), Steven Smith, Brad Haddin (wicketkeeper), James Faulkner, Mitchell Starc, Peter Siddle, Ryan Harris, Nathan Lyon
Umpires: Aleem Dar (PAK), Kumar Dharmasena (SRI)
TV umpire: Tony Hill (NZL)
Match referee: Roshan Mahanama (SRI)