With news that seasoned fast bowler Kane Richardson will miss the entire series due to injury, Australia has been dealt a blow ahead of the first match of their five-match ODI series against Sri Lanka.
Due to an injury to the seasoned quick, Australia will be low on bowling options for the series opener in Kandy.
Richardson hurt his hamstring in the warm-up before Australia’s T20I loss to Sri Lanka on Saturday, and scans have confirmed the severity of the damage.
Pat Cummins To Be Back In Squad For First ODI
The experienced right-armer will return to Australia, and skipper Aaron Finch expects him to be out for up to six weeks.
Richardson’s injury is a further setback for his team that already has Mitchell Starc (finger) and seasoned all-rounder Mitch Marsh (calf) out due to injury.
It means that Test captain Pat Cummins will be pushed back into the XI for the first ODI, with fellow seamers Josh Hazlewood and Jhye Richardson filling in for the rest of the seam attack.
With Adam Zampa unable to play due to the birth of his first child in Australia, left-arm spinner Ashton Agar is given the opportunity to shine, with fellow legspinner Mitchell Swepson being left out.
Australia XI: Aaron Finch (c), David Warner, Steve Smith, Marnus Labuschagne, Marcus Stoinis, Glenn Maxwell, Alex Carey, Ashton Agar, Pat Cummins, Jhye Richardson, Josh Hazlewood
Sri Lanka Ends T20 Series Against Australia With A Consolation Win
Dasun Shanaka launched a furious late assault at a score that had always seemed out of reach for Sri Lanka, slamming sixes over midwicket, blazing fours down the ground, and past cover, anxious to give his team some joy in the series.
There was a little bit of luck, but not a lot. Perhaps a wide that shouldn’t have been called. Australia’s bowlers were missing their lengths at a higher rate than usual.
Shanaka, accompanied by Chamika Karunaratne, who occasionally scored huge hits himself but was more the captain’s hype man, tracked down 75 off the last five overs in front of a packed and raucous Pallekele crowd. Shanaka had only hit six out of his first 12 balls before exploding into supernova mode.