Mitchell Johnson is also on the sidelines, but in truth that is a blessing in disguise for the Australian Team, and a cause of grief for the Kiwis. Due to the fact that he has been dressing as Santa for all opposition batting line ups with his gift laden toiletry bowling for near on 2 years now.
The replacements for these injured players will likely come from the Australian A Team being played against New Zealand at present.
Though greater sense would be seen in rewarding some of the long term performers in the Australian First Class scene. Keeping this in mind, this would be my 12 for the 1st Test
He would provide balance at the top of the order with his defence minded traditional style of opening being a perfect foil for the attack minded Dave Warner. A balance, that has so sadly been lacking since the inexplicable axing of Simon Katich.
Plenty have remarked on this as well even during his characteristic T20 massacres. For they are symbolised by just good cricket shots propelled by immense force. Rather than some wafty slogs to cow corner.
I would see him in the short term warming the seat for Shaun Marsh at number 3, and long term a perfect answer for Australia as a defence minded opener
He should use this series as a farewell from International cricket with a fitting finale being at his home ground of Hobart in the 2nd Test
His Captaincy has been both inventive and imaginary, and it is apparent that the playing group have fuddle tight behind him in their support.
The Mr reliable of Australia cricket, who had a tough tour of South Africa. Which means you can bank that a performer who as proud as Mr Cricket will hit back with vengeance in this Tour. The Kiwi bowlers will need to be at their very best to stop Hussey from having a dominating series against them. As he did in the series in New Zealand at the start of 2010
Haddin looked better in a typical backs to the wall batting effort in the miraculous 2nd Test win against South Africa, and that duly saved his career
Though in the all rounder Faulkner, you not only get his very heady left arm bowling that is around 135 kms, but also his batting. That will develop into a class individual that is able to bat in the Australian top 6.
The next big thing in Aussie cricket alongside Pat Cummings
He has now rediscovered his form, and at a pet Ground in the GABBA, do not be surprised if he gives a few Kiwi batsmen cold sweats
He would be entrusted with leading the attack for this Test, and knowing of him personally from his time at my old Club in Melbourne. He is known as an individual that rises to a challenge, and duly can see him rediscovering form in this Test
A rather nondescript soul, that has nothing that stands out, but he just does the job with a minimum of fuss. In South Africa, he made some crucial breakthroughs that really gives him some brownie points for being in the Team long term
My Best Australian Team
If everyone is fit, this would be my line up
Usman Khawaja, Dave Warner, Shaun Marsh, Michael Clarke, Mike Hussey, Shane Watson, Tim Paine (wk), James Faulkner, Pat Cummins, Ryan Harris, Nathan Lyon
The notable absetees would be Ricky Ponting who should retire, and Mitchell Johnson, who should be sent back to State Cricket. Khawaja and Warner would be given the Indian series to see if they can gell as a long term Australian opening partnership with Shaun Marsh as a long term number 3.
Shane Watson would move down to 6, so as to fully use his bowling threat. As well as to reinvigorate his batting away from the new ball.
I would also replace Brad Haddin behind the stumps with the exceptional Keeper/Batsman in Tim Paine. Who when he returns to fitness should be the long term gloveman for Australia. Also Faulkner would be groomed as Australia's answer as a viable all round, who can be in the side as solely a batsman or bowler. Initially bedding him in at 8 in the line up