X marks the spot, Ashes team announced.

Finally the squad has been trimmed from the massive seventeen people down to the not so massively but still odd and suspicous number thirteen. The largest shock, is the choice of spinner, Xaier Doherty has usurped the throne of Nathan Hauritz and taken his spot within the Australian Cricket team.

Besides Hauritz axing, it’s the usual suspects with Michael Hussey saving himself again, with a century against Victoria, Marcus North still lauding the nude photos he has on the selectors to keep getting picked and Mr  “I’ll run in all day, but not take any wickets” Peter Siddle.

This squad is obviously the selectors sticking to the status quo and not wanting to make a change, besides axing a spinner who averages under 30 in Australia in nine tests. If Australia loses the first test and Hussey/North don’t make any runs, they’ll be gone replaced by some new blood.

They aren’t the only ones needing to impress, Ricky Ponting hasn’t made a hunded since that suspect series against Pakistan down under and might need to shelve the pull shot, if he wants to lengthen his test career because it seems to be a shot that is just not working and getting him out needlessly.

On the bowlers, hopefully they go for the usual line up of Mitchell Johnson who took a five for against Victoria also scoring a century, Doug Bollinger who made a good return for New South Wales, Ben Hilfenhaus who was rested from Tasmania’s last shield game and the new kid on the block Xavier Doherty. Something isn’t quite right though, I have the feeling Peter Siddle will be put into the team at the expense of someone who is more qualifed. There is also Steven Smith to be the back up spinner but he should be playing as a batsmen only at this stage.

Australian squad from cricinfo: Simon Katich, Shane Watson, Ricky Ponting (capt), Michael Clarke, Michael Hussey, Marcus North, Brad Haddin (wk), Steven Smith, Mitchell Johnson, Xavier Doherty, Peter Siddle, Ben Hilfenhaus, Doug Bollinger.

Nathan Hauritz after he heard he was dropped.

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