Smith surprised by Australia selections - Cowan
Ed Cowan says Steve Smith was surprised with the Australia selectors' about-turn for the start of the Ashes series after they opted for experience over youth.
Wicketkeeper Tim Paine and batsman Shaun Marsh were given shock recalls for the first two Tests against England.
Opener Cowan was dropped from the New South Wales team at the start of the Sheffield Shield season after he was told young players would be given a chance to show what they are capable of.
The former Australia opener said both he and Smith were thrown by decisions made by the selectors when the squad was announced last week.
"He [Smith] has had some open and honest conversations with me," said Cowan. "I think he was surprised – without revealing confidential conversations between us – he certainly had a view that that's the way the board had indicated selections were going to go.
"And I think the selection panel, as directed by Pat Howard, has turned that on its head.
"Once we got to the bottom of why it happened, I was comfortable with that [being dropped from NSW team]. The only sour element comes from the fact that three weeks ago, I was evidently too old, and then someone [Shaun Marsh] who I played youth cricket with gets picked in the Test team.
"The policy of the young guys playing, I've got no problem with, as long as it is a selection policy that sticks consistently.
"The bottom line here is every player in the system wants it to be at its absolute maximum capacity. We love the Australian cricket team. We want it to win and we are wishing those guys all the very best.
"But from a systemic point of view, we just want a little more consistency and clarity around selection."