No Bird or Burns in Australia Test squad

Australia have named their Test squad to take on South Africa in November, with paceman Joe Mennie earning a call-up, while Joe Burns and Jackson Bird miss out.

Burns’ Sheffield Shield century this week was not enough to get him recalled, as Shaun Marsh also scored a ton and thus kept his place as opener for the first two Tests.

Bird was thought to be in line for the fourth seamer role, but he was overlooked in favour of Mennie, who was last season’s highest First Class wicket-taker.

National Selector Rod Marsh said: “Joe bowls a great length at a lively pace and his form in first-class cricket has been terrific in the last 12 months.

“He also impressed us during the recent Australia A Series in Queensland.

“He was the highest wicket-taker in the Sheffield Shield last season and is very handy with the bat.”

Batsman Usman Khawaja has been given another chance after being dropped, alongside Burns, for the third Test against Sri Lanka recently.

Of the opener question, Marsh added: “Both Shaun and Joe played very well in the Sheffield Shield round but Shaun is coming off back-to-back hundreds in Test matches and has performed very well in Perth and Hobart so we have opted to go with him.”

The third Test will see a new squad picked, as it is a day-night fixture in Adelaide.

Australia squad for the first two Tests: Steve Smith (c), David Warner (vc), Josh Hazlewood, Usman Khawaja, Nathan Lyon, Mitch Marsh, Shaun Marsh, Joe Mennie, Peter Nevill, Peter Siddle, Mitch Starc, Adam Voges