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Jan 19, 2011

Australia's World Cup Squad

Defending champions Australia revealed their squad for next month's World Cup, banking on the fitness of a pair of injury-prone pacemen and elder statesmen Ricky Ponting and Mike Hussey.

Veteran fast bowler Brett Lee and short-form specialist Shaun Tait were both included in the 15-man squad, which they are trying to win for the fourth successive time.

Ricky Ponting was named as Captain, but is still recovering from a broken finger, while Hussey made the squad but is a major doubt after a severe hamstring tears in the six-wicket win over England at the MCG on Sunday.

Hussey is expected to be sidelined for at least six weeks, with Australia's first game on February 21, and chairman of selectors Andrew Hilditch conceded he was a doubt for the showpiece event.

"It is a severe injury and we will make a decision closer to departure date," Hilditch said on Tuesday. Players can be replaced before the tournament.

The shocking selection was Victorian all-rounder John Hastings, who has played just two one-day internationals, while David Hussey, Mike's younger brother, also made the squad.

Wicketkeeper-batsman Tim Paine, hyped by many as a future Australian skipper, is part of the 15.

Left-arm spinner Xavier Doherty, who played on Sunday, was overlooked in favour of the returning Nathan Hauritz, who was ignored for the entire Ashes series but has been in top form in domestic first-class cricket this season.

Victorian paceman Peter Siddle was not included, despite being one of the better Ashes performers for Australia with ball and bat.

Australia Squad: Ricky Ponting (c), Michael Clarke, Shane Watson, Cameron White, Brad Haddin, David Hussey, Mike Hussey, Tim Paine, John Hastings, Doug Bollinger, Mitchell Johnson, Brett Lee, Shaun Tait, Steven Smith, Nathan Hauritz.

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