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Symonds out of Ashes squad

SYDNEY, May 20 – Controversial all-rounder Andrew Symonds was left out of Australia's squad for this year's Ashes tour to England when it was announced here on Wednesday.ANDREW_SYMONDSSelectors named a 16-man squad with three all-rounders — Shane Watson, Andrew McDonald and Marcus North — but there was no room for the 34-year-old Symonds.

Symonds has had a chequered 26-Test career and has not played for Australia since last year’s Boxing Day Test against South Africa in Melbourne following a season of injury, poor form and off-field personal problems.

Chairman of selectors, Andrew Hilditch, said the selection of injury-prone Watson was subject to his recovery from a groin injury.

Ricky Ponting will lead the touring party with Michael Clarke as his deputy, and they will have a strong six-strong pace attack, headed by Brett Lee and Mitchell Johnson.

Opening batsman Phillip Hughes is the youngster of the tourists at 20, and comes into the Ashes series on the back of scoring four centuries during a six-week English county guest stint with Middlesex this month.

South Australian Graham Manou was named as a back-up wicketkeeper to Brad Haddin.

Australia – Ricky Ponting (captain), Michael Clarke (vice-captain), Simon Katich, Phillip Hughes, Mike Hussey, Marcus North, Andrew McDonald, Shane Watson, Brad Haddin, Graham Manou, Brett Lee, Mitchell Johnson, Peter Siddle, Stuart Clark, Ben Hilfenhaus, Nathan Hauritz.

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