Michael Clarke (captain)
While the Australia skipper’s best format is Test cricket, Clarke still boasts an excellent one-day international record, averaging above 45. The 32-year-old’s troublesome back complaint has made him a sporadic presence in ODIs over the past 12 months. He scored 105 and 75 in the victories that secured a 2-1 NatWest Series win over England in September but missed the lacklustre Champions Trophy campaign and tour of India either side of that rubber.
George Bailey (vice-captain)
Originally brought in as a specialist Twenty20 captain, Bailey has proven himself with the bat in the limited-overs formats and led the side with distinction in Clarke’s injury absence last year. A sensational run of 85, 92 not out, 43, 98 and 156 in India secured a hard-earned Test debut in the recent Ashes series, although he found the going far tougher in the longest form. Bailey was put in charge for the fourth ODI while Clarke was rested.
Primarily a fast bowler, Coulter-Nile made his ODI debut with a creditable return of 1-34 as Australia slipped to a three-wicket defeat at the SWALEC Stadium in September. He was far from the only seamer to suffer a chastening experience when his 10 overs disappeared for 80 runs without reward in a Bangalore run-fest two months later.
Despite failing to establish himself as Australia’s Test spinner when England last toured Down Under, slow-left armer Doherty has become a reliable 50-over performer for his country. After seeing leg-spinner Fawad Ahmed preferred for the trip to England, Doherty was back in situ when his country headed to India.
A fiery all-rounder, Faulkner is a destructive lower-order batsman and excellent death bowler. He featured in the final Investec Ashes Test, enjoying a fine debut, but was reduced to being a diligent and patient 12th man as Australia’s unchanged XI stormed to Ashes glory in the return rubber. Last time out in international colours, he struck a format-best 116 in the final ODI against India, bludgeoning 11 fours and six sixes in a losing cause.
Finch served notice of his rare ball-striking talents with a sensational, world-record 156 in Australia’s summer T20 victory over England at the Ageas Bowl. He is yet to make such a definitive impact in the 50-over game but a pair of half-centuries in the recent tour of India showed the 27-year-old to be heading in the right direction.
The veteran gloveman entered the series in the form of his life after an Ashes campaign apparently crafted in his dreams. Usually in trying circumstances following a clatter of wickets higher up the order, Haddin scored a ton and five more half-centuries, equalling the world record for scores over 50 by a wicketkeeper in a five-match series set by West Indies’ Gerry Alexander versus Australia in 1960-61. As such, he seemed destined to improve on a record of one fifty in his last 19 ODI innings.
Johnson spearheaded Australia’s attack impressively in their NatWest Series victory, backing up those displays well in India to pave the way for his sensational Test return. Australia retained the Ashes urn from the rubble Johnson regularly reduced England’s middle and lower order to and the tourists’ capacity to deal with his searing and slingy left-arm pace could prove as pivotal with the white ball as it did with the red.
Like Clarke and James Pattinson, Marsh is back after missing the India tour through injury – in his case due to a hamstring problem. A powerful 151 at the top of the order against Scotland at Edinburgh back in September is Marsh’s only ODI century since January 2011 yet it is a measure of the regard in which the Australia selectors hold him that he is preferred to the likes of Phil Hughes and Adam Voges for this series.
A wily off-spinner and useful hitter down the order, Maxwell is still best known as the man who barely played after being bought for in excess of $1million by Indian Premier League franchise Mumbai Indians. He gave India fans a demonstration of what they missed with an explosive 92 in the rain-ruined fourth ODI at Ranchi, one of three half-centuries in a series when he claimed a solitary wicket.
An accurate and often economical performer in one-day cricket, McKay has been one of Australia’s standouts in recent times. He will undoubtedly look forward to returning to more helpful tracks following some hard toil in India and, with 91 ODI wickets from 56 career matches to date, will have his eye on reaching 100 against the old enemy.
A stress-fractured back ended Pattinson’s tour of England last summer after Australia’s crushing second-Test defeat at Lord’s. The seamer has not played an ODI since September 2012 but returned to action with Melbourne Renegades in the Big Bash League and will hope to push his claims for a place in February’s touring party to South Africa.
Back in the Australia one-day set-up for the first time since the Champions Trophy defeat to England at Edgbaston in June, Warner is buoyed by some scintillating performances at the top of the order during the hosts’ Ashes triumph. The belligerent hitting that brought centuries at Brisbane and Perth could be even more effective in the shorter format.
His powerful batting and miserly medium-fast bowling makes Watson one of the most formidable limited-overs performers in world cricket. Three of his nine ODI centuries have come against England, most recently a superb 143 at the Ageas Bowl in a number three position he has made his own. Nevertheless, it remains to be seen how well Watson, susceptible to injury throughout his international career, will a shape up physically following the rigours of an Ashes campaign.
The all-rounder was added to the squad when Watson was rested for the middle three games. Christian, who showed good form in the Big Bash League, had already represented Australia in both limited-overs formats with mixed results.
Smith joined the squad for the third ODI onwards, giving Australia another batting option as well as his occasional leg-spin. His format record is modest but he is in fine form with the bat after two Ashes tons.
The wicketkeeper replaced the rested Haddin for last two games, which Warner also sat out. Wade, like Haddin an attacking batsman, has not delivered on his ODI promise, losing his place as first-choice gloveman after a disappointing NatWest Series last year.