MELBOURNE: Explosive batsman Jake Fraser-McGurk has been added to Australia’s T20 World Cup squad as one of two reserve players following his impressive performances in the Indian Premier League (IPL).

Fraser-McGurk racked up 330 runs in nine appearances for the Delhi Capitals, igniting a media campaign advocating for his inclusion in the squad for next month’s T20 World Cup in the United States and Caribbean. Initially, selectors resisted the pressure, naming a 15-man squad without him three weeks ago. However, on Tuesday, they announced that the 22-year-old Melbourne native would join the squad alongside fellow batsman Matt Short.

The versatile Short, who can also bowl off-spin, distinguished himself in Australia’s recent Big Bash League. Both Fraser-McGurk and Short were close to making the initial squad but were edged out due to the strength of Australia’s top order, led by David Warner, Travis Head, and Mitchell Marsh.

“Matt and Jake made compelling cases for initial selection with their respective performances for Australia last summer and, in Jake’s case, more recently in the IPL,” said chief selector George Bailey. “As the tournament proceeds, the short turnaround between fixtures makes it challenging to get players in at short notice in the event of injury. Matt provides the squad with an all-round skill set option, while Jake provides further batting cover.”

The 15-man squad, captained by all-rounder Mitchell Marsh, remains unchanged. Australia, who clinched the World Test Championship and one-day World Cup last year, are aiming for their second T20 World Cup title, which would make them the first nation to hold all three of cricket’s global trophies simultaneously.

The T20 World Cup will take place in the United States and the West Indies starting on June 2.

Australia squad: Mitchell Marsh (captain), Ashton Agar, Pat Cummins, Tim David, Nathan Ellis, Cameron Green, Josh Hazlewood, Travis Head, Josh Inglis, Glenn Maxwell, Mitchell Starc, Marcus Stoinis, Matthew Wade, David Warner, Adam Zampa; Travelling reserves: Jake Fraser-McGurk, Matt Short.

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