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Aussies 'treating Twenty20 seriously'

Australia will send its strongest possible squad to this year's Twenty20 World Cup, says chief selector Andrew Hilditch.

South Africa is hosting the inaugural 20-over-a-side tournament in September, five months after the one-day World Cup is decided in the Caribbean.

Test cricket's undisputed world champions will focus on achieving a cricketing 'grand slam' by selecting their front-line stars for the maligned bash-and-crash competition rather than a development side.

Chief selector Andrew Hilditch has indicated the vast majority of the one-day World Cup squad would also contest the Twenty20 tournament.

"If we're going to South Africa to play a Twenty20 event we'll be going there to try and win it so we'll be picking what we think is our best side," he said.

Hilditch will on Wednesday meet with his four-man panel to choose a Twenty20 team to play England in a one-off clash at the SCG on January 9.

The match will be a quasi warm-up for the one-day tri-series with the Australian team set to contain players from the tri-series squad, which will be announced at the end of the fifth Ashes Test.

While the 13-day interstate Big Bash tournament may throw up a number of obscure players suited to the bash-and-crash nature of the game, Hilditch said an Australian Twenty20 side was "unlikely to be much different to the one-day squad".

"I think down the track there won't be a vast difference between the Twenty20 side and the one-day side," he said.

"Most of the players who are good enough to play one-day cricket for Australia will certainly be good enough to play Twenty20 cricket for Australia.

"There might be slight variations between each form of the game but I think the variations would be very slight."

West Australian Adam Voges is expected to be one included in both the one-day and Twenty20 squads to be announced this week, especially after furthering his claims with a man-of-the-match performance against NSW at the WACA.

But Voges, who made 74 off 45 balls, was already in the mix after Damien Martyn's shock retirement saw him catapulted into the Test squad in Perth last month.

While Phil Jaques did his selection chances no harm also with 69 off 38, the match-winning performances of Victorian Aiden Blizzard (89 off 38) and Queenslander Clinton Perren (82 off 37) will all but be ignored as the tournament's focus is promotion and money-spinning.

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source - theage.com.au

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