Hilditch: Hughes will return
Chairman of selectors Andrew Hilditch believes Phil Hughes will earn a recall to Australia's Test team in the near future.
Last Updated: 09/10/09 2:29pm
Australia's chairman of selectors Andrew Hilditch believes Phil Hughes will return to the Test team - despite insisting the decision to drop him during the Ashes was the right one at the time.
The left-handed opener was jettisoned just two Tests into the series against England after making 57 runs in three innings.
The 20-year-old had previously enjoyed a stunning tour of South Africa, hitting two hundreds in Durban, but was still replaced by Shane Watson.
Hilditch admits in any other series the selectors would have kept faith in Hughes, who he believes can bounce back and earn a recall.
"Phil is a really talented young man," he said. "It was a terrible call to have to drop him during the Ashes series.
"Probably in any other series we would've been more supportive of a young player - but we just needed to make a change at that particular moment.
"It was a right decision but for him it was very disappointing. Our view is we still see him as part of our future, and we'll probably look to reintroduce him once he's back to form."
Before Australia return to Test action they head out to India for a seven-match one-day series.
Having overcome a troublesome hamstring injury, Shaun Marsh is likely to open again - meaning the impressive Tim Paine will have to make way.
Wicketkeeper-batsman Paine has scored 389 runs at 32.41 in his 14 one-day appearances in place of the injured Brad Haddin.
However, Hilditch believes the 24-year-old gloveman from Tasmania will have to drop down the order - provided Marsh is selected in the team.
"Prior to that injury, he was a very key member of our side and performed extremely well in the opportunities he had - so he comes back into the squad," said Hilditch.
"I think if Shaun plays he will bat at the top of the order.
"Obviously Tim Paine has played that role really well and he's impressed in his limited opportunities, but I'd see Shaun coming back at the top of the order when he gets back into the side."
Australia are without vice-captain Michael Clarke, wicketkeeper Haddin, batsman Callum Ferguson and seamer Nathan Bracken due to injuries.
Left-arm spinner Jon Holland has been called up for the first time while there are five fast bowlers named in the party in Brett Lee, Doug Bollinger, Ben Hilfenhaus, Mitchell Johnson and Peter Siddle.
"We think it's very important going into India because we will need to watch the workload of those fast bowlers, who return straight into a very full-on domestic season," added Hilditch.