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Fresh faces in women's WC squad

Australia selectors pick four uncapped bowlers in an extended 21-player preliminary squad

Uncapped bowlers Sarah Aley, Piepa Cleary, Molly Strano and Belinda Vakarewa have all been named in an extended 21-player Australia squad for the upcoming Women's World Cup.

A mix of current Australia representatives make up the bulk of the squad along with the new bowling quartet, all of whom could be in line to make their One-Day International debuts this winter.

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After initially joining the squad in Brisbane on Monday, Lauren Cheatle has since been ruled out of World Cup contention and returned home to Sydney where she will consult a specialist next week for likely surgery on an ongoing shoulder injury.

The final 15-player squad will be selected following a three-week training camp at the Bupa National Cricket Centre in Brisbane from 24 April – 12 May.

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"We are really excited about players that have been chosen in this initial squad and are looking forward to seeing them put their best foot forward over the next three weeks," said national selector Shawn Flegler.

"There's some great depth in the squad with the more experienced players complimented by a number of new faces who have shown they can hold their own at this level.

"The ICC Women's Championship showed us how tough this year's tournament is going to be and the players know they're going to have to be at the top of their game to win the title."

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Australia will be looking to make a strong start to their campaign which begins on June 26 against the West Indies at The Country Ground in Taunton.  

England, New Zealand, West Indies, India, South Africa, Pakistan and Sri Lanka will join Australia in the tournament with each side to face off against the other seven nations concluding with semi-finals at Bristol and Derby before the final at Lords on July 23.

Australia are the defending champions, having won a record sixth World Cup in 2013 after defeating the West Indies by 114 runs in the final in India.

Australia 21-player squad: Sarah Aley (NSW), Kristen Beams (Vic), Alex Blackwell (NSW), Nicole Bolton (WA), Piepa Cleary (WA), Holly Ferling (Qld), Ashleigh Gardner (NSW), Grace Harris (Qld), Rachael Haynes (NSW), Alyssa Healy (NSW), Jess Jonassen (Qld), Meg Lanning (Vic), Tahlia McGrath (SA), Beth Mooney (Qld), Erin Osborne (ACT), Ellyse Perry (NSW), Megan Schutt (SA), Molly Strano (Vic), Belinda Vakarewa (NSW), Elyse Villani (WA), Amanda-Jade Wellington (SA)

Australia's World Cup schedule

June 26: Australia v West Indies, Taunton

June 29: Australia v Sri Lanka, Bristol

July 2: Australia v New Zealand, Bristol

July 5: Australia v Pakistan, Leicester

July 9: Australia v England, Bristol

July 12: Australia v India, Bristol

July 15: Australia v South Africa, Taunton

July 18: First semi-final, Bristol


July 20: Second semi-final, Derby


July 23: Final, Lord's

Tickets on sale May 8