Australia hand surprise recall to Tim Paine for first Ashes Test

Wicketkeeper Tim Paine is handed a surprise recall to the Australia squad for their opening Ashes Test against England following a seven-year absence.

Australia have handed a surprise recall to wicketkeeper Tim Paine for the opening Ashes Test against England.

Reports emerged earlier today suggesting that Paine would be handed an unlikely return to Test cricket following a seven-year absence, and Cricket Australia have now confirmed the news by including the 32-year-old in their squad for the first two matches of the series.

Paine has been behind Matthew Wade in the pecking order for Tasmania during their opening three JLT Sheffield Shield rounds, but has now been selected ahead of both Wade and Peter Nevill to earn the gloves.

Veteran batsman Shaun Marsh has also been brought back into the 13-man squad, while there could be debuts for Cameron Bancroft and Chadd Sayers.

Steve Smith will captain the hosts' squad with David Warner as his vice, where there are also places in the party for Ashes veterans Mitchell Starc, Nathan Lyon and Josh Hazlewood.

The first Test gets underway at The Gabba in Brisbane next Thursday as England look to retain the urn.

Australia Squad: Steve Smith (c), David Warner (vc), Cameron Bancroft, Usman Khawaja, Peter Handscomb, Shaun Marsh, Tim Paine (wk), Mitchell Starc, Pat Cummins, Nathan Lyon, Josh Hazlewood, Jackson Bird, Chadd Sayers.

Peter Nevill of New South Wales bats during day four of the Sheffield Shield match between Victoria and New South Wales at the Melbourne Cricket Ground on November 3, 2014
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