"Australia's National Selection Panel have opted for the shock selection of Queenslander Joe Burns to join the 13-man squad for the Boxing Day Test," a release by Cricket Australia said.

Burns, 25, has come in as a batsman to replace Marsh, while coach Darren Lehmann said he was "confident" David Warner's injured thumb would be fine.

"Joe Burns can bat anywhere from one to six. There's some flexibility there," Lehmann said.

Burns has been rewarded for a brilliant run in the Sheffield Shield this year, scoring 439 runs at an average of
55. He has scored 2978 runs at an average of 42.54 at the first-class level.

"It took a fair while to sink in. I'm over the moon at the news as it is the best Christmas present I could ever hope for. I'll get sorted before the game tonight and then see what I have to do tomorrow but I'm just so happy," Burns said.

Marsh has played Australia's last four Tests but has been hampered by hamstring problems over the past two years.

Ryan Harris' recovery is still unknown from a quadricep muscle strain but the paceman has been included in the squad for Melbourne.

Australia lead 2-0 in the four-match series.

Australia's squad for the third Test: Steve Smith (capt), David Warner, Chris Rogers, Shane Watson, Shaun Marsh, Joe Burns, Brad Haddin, Mitchell Johnson, Mitchell Starc, Nathan Lyon, Josh Hazlewood, Ryan Harris, Peter Siddle.

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