Australia add Agar for final Ashes test

MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) Ashton Agar has been added to an expanded 14-man Australia squad for the fifth and final Ashes test against England, starting in Sydney on January 4.

The left-arm spinner was given the nod ahead of Steve O’Keefe and Jon Holland as a possible partner for Australia’s first-choice spinner Nathan Lyon for the series finale.

Australia used just one specialist spinner for each of the first four tests but almost always calls in a second for tests at the Sydney Cricket Ground, Australia’s most spin-friendly wicket.

Agar made a memorable test debut against England in 2013, scoring 98 batting at No. 11, but has played only three tests since after struggling to cement a place in the team.

The 14-man squad also included fast bowler Mitchell Starc, who helped Australia regain the Ashes by winning the first three tests.

Starc missed the fourth test in Melbourne because of a foot injury and although he is hoping to play in Sydney, he is racing against time to recover.

Australia squad: Steve Smith (captain), David Warner, Cameron Bancroft, Usman Khawaja, Shaun Marsh, Mitchell Marsh, Tim Paine, Pat Cummins, Josh Hazlewood, Nathan Lyon, Jackson Bird, Mitchell Starc, Ashton Agar, Peter Handscomb.