Marnus Labuschagne’s outstanding recent form has earnt him a place on Cricket Australia’s player contract list, but there’s no such good news for Usman Khawaja and five other men’s players who’ve dropped off.
Labuschagne’s form in the Ashes and Australian summer season, which has him at no.3 on the ICC’s Test batting rankings, behind only Steve Smith and Virat Kohli, led to a coveted CA contract.
He’s joined by all-rounder Mitchell Marsh, white-ball spinner Ashton Agar, Test opener Joe Burns, limited-overs quick Kane Richardson, and middle-order batsman Matthew Wade as the men added to the contract list.
Usman Khawaja, a vital member of the World Cup side which made the semi-finals in England who scored 1085 runs at 49.31 in ODIs in 2019, did not keep his contract, nor did Marcus Stoinis, Nathan Coulter-Nile, Peter Handscomb, Marcus Harris and Shaun Marsh.
“There is a lot of cricket on the horizon across all three forms of the game including an ICC T20 World Cup, home Test summer against India, one-day matches and a tour of South Africa. For that reason, it’s important to find a strong balance and a list which covers all forms of the game,” selector Trevor Hohns said.
“With many of the squad crossing into all three formats it gives us the benefit of being able to add in specialists depending on the opposition and the conditions. The depth of this squad and the success of the past 12 months gives us that solid base.”
Meanwhile, fast bowler Tayla Vlaeminck and Annabel Sutherland were both added to the women’s players list after receiving contract upgrades last season, while Tahlia McGrath was another new addition.
Both Nicole Bolton and Ellyse Villani dropped off, while Erin Burns and Molly Strano were unlucky to miss out on contracts, according to selector Shawn Flegler.
“Erin Burns was unlucky to miss out having been upgraded to a full contract this season but is highly rated by the selectors. She’s an adaptable player and is still in the mix for future selection,” Flegler said.
“Molly Strano also misses out despite being drafted into Australia’s World Cup squad and playing an important role, but she too is highly rated and will be looked at for future opportunities.”
Cricket Australia contracted men’s players
Ashton Agar, Joe Burns, Alex Carey, Pat Cummins, Aaron Finch, Josh Hazlewood, Travis Head, Marnus Labuschagne, Nathan Lyon, Mitchell Marsh, Glenn Maxwell, Tim Paine, James Pattinson, Jhye Richardson, Kane Richardson, Steve Smith, Mitchell Starc, Matthew Wade, David Warner, Adam Zampa
Cricket Australia contracted women’s players
Nicola Carey, Ashleigh Gardner, Rachael Haynes, Alyssa Healy, Jess Jonassen, Delissa Kimmince, Meg Lanning, Tahlia McGrath, Sophie Molineux, Beth Mooney, Ellyse Perry, Megan Schutt, Annabel Sutherland, Tayla Vlaeminck, Georgia Wareham