Mitchell Starc is confident that he would regain his rhythm quickly for the ICC Champions Trophy. The Australian pacer was sidelined for nearly three months after sustaining an injury in the first of a four match Test series against Inida.
This is Starc’s second return from the sidelines after his injury in 2016. At the time, he made his return in West Indies but looked rusty. But he was confident that he would be able to make a smoother transition in England.
“Even coming back into the nets, it didn’t feel like it took too long to get some good rhythm back. So hopefully it’s not like last time with such a big lay-off,” said Starc according to Reuters, “I’m pretty confident with how it’s going, it’s feeling good in the nets and with the few centre wickets we’ve had. But it’ll be nice to get out in the middle and bowl some overs in match-like conditions.”
Starc will be leading a young but formidable pace battery including Josh Hazlewood, Pat Cummins and James Pattinson. Injuries have kept the quartet from coming together earlier, so Starc was thrilled they were all fit for selection.
“We’re looking forward to hopefully playing a few games together if the four of us get picked,” he said, “We’ve obviously come through the ranks together, we’ve played a lot together and against each other in the under-age stuff and heading into to domestic cricket.”
“But we haven’t all been on the park at the same time for Australia. So I think it’s exciting for the four of us.” Australia’s preparations for the tournament, which they start against New Zealand at Edgbaston on Friday, have been overshadowed by a pay dispute between the players union and board, Cricket Australia (CA).
Over the weekend, The Australian newspaper reported CA high performance chief Pat Howard had written to senior players directly in a bid to end the impasse with less than a month to go before a new collective bargaining agreement is due.
Starc, who hinted at the possibility of an Ashes boycott on social media earlier this month, said the Australian Cricketers Association had players’ full support.
“They have four weeks to go on the MoU (memorandum of understanding) and the players are leaving it to the ACA to sort it out for our side of things,” he said.