Cricket: Australia opt for four-pronged fast attack

By David Leggat

Josh Hazlewood. Photo / Getty Images.
Josh Hazlewood. Photo / Getty Images.

Australia are determined to prevent New Zealand giving their captain Brendon McCullum a winning farewell in the tour starting at Eden Park tomorrow.

McCullum is retiring after the second test against Australia in Christchurch in late-February.

The last time he faced Australia at Eden Park, he struck a 24-ball half century to help New Zealand sneak a one-wicket win in the World Cup pool game.

''Brendon has been a terrific player and leader for a long time. No doubt they'll want to send him off in the best way possible. It's up to us to make that not happen."

However Smith laid off any talk of giving McCullum any tips in the middle.

''For us it's about making sure we're playing the same way we have been, good, hard aggressive cricket and hopefully that will take care of itself."

Australia have omitted in-form Usman Khawaja for the opening game and have resisted the temptation to play promising legspinner Adam Zampa, opting instead for a four-pronged fast-medium attack, plus the allround skills of Mitchell Marsh and offspin of allrounder Glen Maxwell.

New Zealand have intriguingly brought legspinner Ish Sodhi into their squad for tomorrow.

The Australian team for tomorrow: Steve Smith ©, David Warner, Sean Marsh, George Bailey, Glen Maxwell, Mitchell Marsh, Matt Wade, James Faulkner, John Hastings, Kane Richardson, Josh Hazlewood.

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