* Australia cut squad to 27
* Jedinak pleased with progress of injury (Adds detail, quotes)
By Nick Mulvenney
SYDNEY, May 26 (Reuters) - Australia coach Ange Postecoglou cut Curtis Good, Josh Brillante and Adam Sarota from his preliminary squad for the World Cup on Tuesday, leaving a 27-strong party to depart for Brazil.
Defender Good suffered a hip flexor injury in Australia's friendly against Ecuador in March and has not played since, while midfielder Sarota has been on the comeback trail after knee reconstruction.
Postecoglou, who will cut a further four players on June 2 to leave the final 23, said Brillante was considered dispensable because of the number of midfielders in the squad.
"It wasn't easy decisions because obviously players being so close to getting on the plane to the World Cup, it was not the best news to deliver," he told a news conference.
"With Curtis, we wanted to give him every chance ... but we tested him a few days ago and he just couldn't get up to where he wanted to be.
"Adam's in his first year after knee reconstruction. He's worked hard to get back playing regular football and ... it's probably best he gets a good pre-season under his belt.
"I rate Josh very highly but with so many players in his position, the balance of the squad was such that one of the midfielders had to miss out."
Postecoglou said no further injury problems had emerged from Monday's 1-1 draw against South Africa and right back Ivan Franjic, who came off after hurting his knee, was not a concern.
Captain Mile Jedinak, who handed the armband to Tim Cahill for the South Africa match as he continued his recovery from a groin strain, said he was still not training with the rest of the squad.
"It's progressing really well, I'm happy where it's at," he said. "It's just a matter of gradually stepping it up and once we're in Brazil, hopefully, in the not too distant future, join up with the team."
As for other injury concerns, Postecoglou said first choice central defender Matthew Spiranovic (ankle) and experienced midfielder Mark Bresciano (back) could have played against South Africa but were rested as a precaution.
That had impacted his line-up for the match against Bafana Bafana, Postecoglou said, and he had not been too concerned by a somewhat disjointed performance.
"I know where we're at, I know where our progression is and, while you want to win every game, from our perspective it's about being ready for game one at the World Cup," he said.
"As part of that process we're doing certain things that probably effected last night's match. I'm not disappointed, the intent last night was there and maybe a little bit of exuberance and fatigue made things scrappier than we would have liked."
Australia leave Sydney for Brazil on Wednesday and open their campaign against Chile on June 13 in Cuiaba with matches against the Netherlands and world champions Spain to follow.
Goalkeepers - Mathew Ryan (Club Bruges), Mitchell Langerak (Borussia Dortmund), Eugene Galekovic (Adelaide United), Mark Birighitti (Newcastle Jets)
Defenders - Jason Davidson (Heracles Almelo), Matthew Spiranovic (Western Sydney Wanderers), Luke Wilkshire (Dynamo Moscow), Ivan Franjic (Brisbane Roar), Bailey Wright (Preston North End), Ryan McGowan (Shandong Luneng), Alex Wilkinson (Jeonbuk Hyundai Motors)
Midfielders - Oliver Bozanic (Luzern), Mark Bresciano (Al Gharafa, Qatar), James Holland (Austria Vienna), Mile Jedinak (Crystal Palace), Mark Milligan (Melbourne Victory), Dario Vidosic (Sion), Matt McKay (Brisbane Roar), James Troisi (Atalanta), Massimo Luongo (Swindon)
Forwards - Tim Cahill (New York Red Bulls), Josh Kennedy (Nagoya Grampus), Matthew Leckie (FSV Frankfurt 1899), Tommy Oar (Utrecht), Tomas Rogic (Celtic), Ben Halloran (Fortuna Duesseldorf), Adam Taggart (Newcastle Jets). (Reporting by Nick Mulvenney, editing by Greg Stutchbury)
- Sports & Recreation
- Adam Sarota
- Mile Jedinak
- Curtis Good
- South Africa