Batting all-rounder Glenn Maxwell has been dropped from the recently-announced 16-member Australian squad for the upcoming two-match Test series against Pakistan, beginning October 7.
The development came as a surprise as the right-hand batsman had scored with an impressive average of more than 50 in the last domestic season.
Reflecting on the selections, Australian selector Trevor Hohns said that the name of Maxwell was discussed during the meeting, but the decision to omit his name, along with other players, was taken after keeping in mind the playing conditions of United Arab Emirates.
"Joe, Peter, and Glenn were players we discussed when selecting the batting group, but we had to take into account the conditions and competition we are set to face in the upcoming series," cricket.com.au quoted Trevor Hohns, as saying.
"All three remain on our radar for Test cricket, but we want them to perform for their states and continue to push their case ahead of what is going to be a big Australian summer," he added.
While Australian veterans Aaron Finch and Peter Siddle made their way into the Test squad, some first timers including batsman Marnus Labuschagne and fast bowlers Michael Neser and Brendan Doggett were also given the chance.
Speaking on Finch's selection, Hohns stated that he is in a sensational form at the moment and brings along the required experience into the team.
"Aaron is in sensational form, and this is the right time to give him a chance to play Test cricket. He has performed well in the Sheffield Shield in recent seasons, and brings added experience and leadership to this group," Hohns said.
Australia are slated to play their first Test from July 7 in Dubai followed by the second match at Abu Dhabi from October 16.
Following is the full Australian squad for the series:
Tim Paine (c), Ashton Agar, Brendan Doggett, Aaron Finch, Travis Head, Jon Holland, Usman Khawaja, Marnus Labuschagne, Nathan Lyon, Mitch Marsh, Shaun Marsh, Michael Neser, Matthew Renshaw, Peter Siddle, Mitchell Starc.