New Delhi: Australian cricketers Usman Khawaja, Adam Voges and Joe Burns were among seven new players to be handed central contracts on Friday.
These players weren't on the initial list for the 2016/2017 season announced a year ago. But after retirements of key players, they have made their way into the selectors` plans.
Alongside the trio, Nathan Coulter-Nile, John Hastings, Peter Nevill and Peter Siddle have also been added to the 20-man list.
These players have enjoyed a good run in cricket for Australia in recent times and it's the best time for them to go into the season in a positive fashion.
Australia's chief selector Rodney Marsh said in a statement that the management has the confidence in these players chosen and believe they can be successful.
"There is a lot of talent within this group and we have confidence that the players chosen can be successful in all three forms of the game," chief selector Rodney Marsh said in a statement.
Witch several experienced faces such as Michael Clarke, Brad Haddin, Ryan Harris, Mitchell Johnson, Chris Rogers and Shane Watson called it quits for Australia last year.
Marsh added that this group of players, who have earned their contracts after some high-profile exits, will give the side a healthy blend of youth and experience.
"Following a number of high-profile retirements, we believe this group of players gives us a healthy blend of youth and experience to represent Australia at the highest level."
According to Australian media reports, it is believed that Usman Khawaja was expected to pocket more Aus$1 million ($770,000) from his new contract after his sparkling form in all three formats.
Burns, meanwhile is reaping the benefits of his capabilities as a Test opener, replacing the retired Rogers, which included his man-of-the-match 170 against New Zealand in Christchurch in February.
Voges, 36, has also been in the runs, and has made a substantial difference for Australia in Tests. His Test average temporarily climbed above the great Sir Don Bradman`s 99.94 this year.
Cricket Australia's contracted players 2016-17: George Bailey, Joe Burns, Nathan Coulter-Nile, Patrick Cummins, James Faulkner, Aaron Finch, John Hastings, Josh Hazlewood, Usman Khawaja, Nathan Lyon, Mitchell Marsh, Shaun Marsh, Glenn Maxwell, Peter Nevill, James Pattinson, Adam Voges, Peter Siddle, Steve Smith, Mitchell Starc, David Warner.
(With Agency inputs)