Melbourne, Aug 7: Australia team will assemble in Darwin on Wednesday for the annual Player Camp, which this year will have a strong training and match component, readying the squad for the VB Tour of the UAE against Afghanistan and Pakistan, along with the approaching ICC World Twenty20 in Sri Lanka, a Cricket Australia (CA) media release said on Tuesday.
The Player Camp runs from 8-15 August in Darwin and this year sees CA partner with NT Cricket and the Northern Territory Government to take the camp to the top end, integrating training with community activities.
The first day and a half will be jam-packed with administrational requirements as players record television commercials, sponsor messages and packages for broadcasts and partners before the 2012-13 season starts.
Over the course of the week the squad will train at Marrara Cricket Ground, play matches on Sunday and Tuesday, while also interacting with the community, visiting the Tiwi Islands through a joint-initiative with NT Government and Commonwealth Bank, and running school cricket clinics.
Australian coach Mickey Arthur said the camp provided vital preparation for the upcoming VB Tour of the UAE against Afghanistan and Pakistan and also ahead of the ICC World Twenty20 in Sri Lanka in September.
"We've got a couple of important series coming up, in the UAE against Pakistan and Afghanistan, as well as the ICC World Twenty20 in Sri Lanka in September and after a disappointing series in England recently we feel this is a great opportunity to really put in some good preparation ahead of our next tours," Arthur said.
"We're expecting dry, turning and slower pitches in the UAE and also in Sri Lanka so we have a real spin-bowling focus on the next week in Darwin with both our training and matches
"The Marrara Oval curator is preparing net and centre wicket conditions similar to those we're going to face in the UAE and in Sri Lanka so our spin bowlers can get some good practice in, while our batsmen can also get accustom to playing in those conditions.
"Combine those practice conditions with Darwin's warm temperatures at this time of year and it will give us the best preparation possible for these upcoming series."
The players attending are as follows: August 8 to 15 (CA contracted and UAE squad members): George Bailey, Dan Christian, Michael Clarke, Pat Cummins, Xavier Doherty, Callum Ferguson, Brad Haddin, Ben Hilfenhaus, Brad Hogg, David Hussey, Mike Hussey, Glenn Maxwell, Clint McKay, James Pattinson, Peter Siddle, Steve Smith, Mitchell Starc, Matthew Wade, David Warner, Shane Watson, Cameron White.
August 8 to August 11 (Non-limited overs players): Ryan Harris, Ricky Ponting
August 9 to 15 (Non-CA contracted): Michael Beer, Cameron Boyce, Nathan Hauritz, Jason Krejza, Nic Maddinson, Stephen O'Keefe, Mitch Marsh.