Australia have trimmed their squad for the Ashes opener from 17 to 13 names - and there is no place for spinner Nathan Hauritz.
Hauritz's absence leaves his New South Wales team-mate Steve Smith and uncapped Tasmanian Xavier Doherty as the only slow-bowling options for the Brisbane showdown, starting on November 25.
The four-man selection panel, chaired by Andrew Hilditch, has shown more faith in experienced batsman Mike Hussey.
Hussey's spot was under pressure after a poor run of form but a timely century for Western Australia on Friday, coupled with failures from his young rivals Callum Ferguson and Usman Khawaja for Australia A in their tour match against England, made it an easy decision to retain the 54-Test veteran.
Hauritz, Ferguson, Khawaja and Queensland paceman Ryan Harris are the four players from the original 17-man party to miss out.
"The national selection panel (NSP) has picked what it believes to be a strong and well-balanced squad, selected specifically with the conditions in Brisbane in mind," said Hilditch.
"The squad contains a number of experienced Test players and some exciting young talent, and we firmly believe it has the ability to win the first Test of the Vodafone Ashes Series in Brisbane."
Hilditch was also at pains to point out it was tough call to leave out Hauritz.
"Nathan Hauritz is one of the players omitted and he can consider himself unlucky, because his Australian record has been very good over the past 12 months," he added.
"However, the NSP believes the left-arm orthodox variety Xavier Doherty provides against a predominantly right-handed English middle order is the better option in this game."
On the reasons for sticking with Hussey, Hilditch noted: "Callum and Usman are both wonderful young players who we believe will play a big role for Australian cricket moving forward, but on this occasion the experienced middle order has been preferred.
"We felt Ryan Harris needed further time to recover from his knee injury and also believe the four fast bowlers we have selected are in good form and will be key weapons for us winning the Ashes series this summer."
Australia squad: R Ponting (capt), M Clarke (vice-capt), D Bollinger, X Doherty, B Haddin (wkt), M Hussey, B Hilfenhaus, M Johnson, S Katich, M North, P Siddle, S Smith, S Watson