Steve Smith's recall has left Peter Handscomb "desperately unlucky" while Josh Hazlewood's lack of match fitness also cost him a spot in Australia's World Cup defence.
Hazlewood and Handscomb have been left out of Australia's 15-man World Cup squad, with David Warner set to return from his 12-month ban alongside Smith.
Nathan Coulter-Nile and Jason Behrendorff were the surprise picks, with Jhye Richardson set to earn a spot in Australia's top side in England as a third quick alongside Mitchell Starc and newly-crowned vice-captain Pat Cummins.
But it was Hazlewood's non-selection that raised the most eyebrows. The seamer hasn't played a one-dayer for Australia since November due to a back injury, but has still been one of the team's best bowlers for the past two years.
His 17 wickets over that period have come at a team-low average of 25.05, while his economy rate of 5.01 is second only to Cummins among the quicks.
But he'll now be left to spend the first half of the winter for Australia A - also in England - to prepare for the subsequent Ashes.
"His complete lack of hard match play over a period of time weighed against him," chief selector Trevor Hohns said.
"There is a little bit of unknown too there. He is yet to prove he is fully fit.
"However in saying that, he still remains an option for us if a replacement were to be needed."
Fellow pacemen Richardson (dislocated shoulder) and Starc (pectoral) have both been backed by selectors to overcome their injuries in time for June 1 to face Afghanistan.
Richardson's undeniable recent ODI form, which included 17 wickets in eight matches, no doubt made the decision to overlook Hazlewood somewhat easier.
Australia will then need to decide between Adam Zampa and Nathan Lyon, with it unlikely they'll take both spinners into most matches.
Questions also remain at the top of the order with Usman Khawaja, captain Aaron Finch and Warner all picked, although it's likely Khawaja could then drop down to No.3.
Smith would then bat at No.4 in Australia's first game against Afghanistan on June 1, knocking Handscomb out of the squad despite the Victorian helping his cause with a century in India last month.
"Peter was desperately unlucky, I can't deny that. It just so happened that Stephen Smith and David Warner were coming back," Hohns said.
"Somebody had to miss out and we think Steve can play the same role Pete did in the batting line up.
"Pete excelled in the role he was given, there is no doubt about that. So once again he is on standby and will be involved in the Australia A tour."
The decision to overlook Handscomb means selectors will entrust wicketkeeper Alex Carey to get through the entire tournament, with Handscomb and the back-in-the-picture Matthew Wade both options to be called out of the Australia A squad in the case of injury to the gloveman.
AUSTRALIA'S 15-MAN WORLD CUP SQUAD: Aaron Finch (capt), David Warner, Usman Khawaja, Steve Smith, Shaun Marsh, Glenn Maxwell, Marcus Stoinis, Alex Carey (vc), Pat Cummins (vc), Jhye Richardson, Mitchell Starc, Nathan Coulter-Nile, Jason Behrendorff, Adam Zampa, Nathan Lyon.
Australian Associated Press