Last Update on: December 23rd, 2021 at 10:34 am
Australia speedster Mitchell Starc is expected to be fit for the Boxing Day Test after he had twinged his ribs while batting in the second Test at Adelaide. Starc had attempted a slog sweep but in that follow-through had a lot of pressure put on his ribs which led him into being in discomfort.
However, Starc bowled 27 overs in the second innings and also picked up a couple of wickets that of England skipper Joe Root and Ollie Pope. While Australia will be relieved that Starc is close to full fitness, they are still sweating on Josh Hazlewood’s fitness.
Hazlewood had suffered a side strain due to which he was out of action from the second Test at Adelaide. After spending a week in Sydney, Hazlewood will be joining the team in Melbourne on Thursday. Australia will be hopeful that Hazlewood returns to full fitness before the Boxing Day Test.
“It’s just [Starc’s] rib actually,” Langer said. “A lot of the bowlers talk about when they come back to Test cricket, bowl more overs, they jam down on that rib area so he should be fine. He’s tough.
“If he’s not right, then we’ll look at it. But at this stage, there’s no indication suggesting he won’t be playing the next Test. We will wait and see how Josh Hazlewood pulls up, he arrives this afternoon.”
Mitchell Starc is an unbelievable athlete: Justin Langer
Justin Langer heaped praise on Mitchell Starc for his contribution with both the bat and ball in the Adelaide Test. Starc had to step up in the absence of Australia’s two premier pacers in Pat Cummins and Josh Hazlewood and Langer believes he did that with great authority.
“I honestly thought Mitch Starc was almost the man of the match last game. There’s been a lot of talk about Mitch Starc for the last few years but he just keeps turning up. He’s an unbelievable athlete. He’s incredibly fit.”
“His resilience to just keep coming up over and over and over again is remarkable really, and his consistency of length and the way he controlled the tempo of the game last game was a great credit to him, particularly with Patty and Josh Hazlewood not playing.”