I find it strange on reflection. He seems like such a competitive bloke, who absolutely loves cricket.
He cited the old "wanting to spend more time with the family" reason for retiring, but he is currently in India playing for Chennai in the IPL. Fair enough too, as it's a lucrative cash earner. However, he always seemed to me to be so passionate about playing cricket for Australia that something doesn't add up. Surely he could have said to the selectors "I'm going to miss the India test series, and then make myself available for the Ashes if you need me".
I'd be so much more comfortable if he was in the team. He makes us a lot stronger. This looks competitive to me, especially with our bowling attack being strong...
Guess it's too late now, but does his retirement seem oddly timed to anyone else? Any truth to the rumours he had a massive fall-out with Clarke?