Pakistan vs Australia: Mitchell Starc ready to play as sole pacer should visitors opt for three-pronged spin attack

Mitchell Starc went wicketless in his first test in the region but has been Australia's most successful bowler in South Asia since 2013.

Reuters, Sep 25, 2018 17:49:00 IST

Dubai: Mitchell Starc is ready to step up and do the heavy lifting as Australia's sole specialist pace bowler should the tourists opt for a three-pronged spin attack in next month's two-test series against Pakistan.

Using a trio of slow bowlers in the United Arab Emirates remains a strong possibility for the Australians as they explore means to capture 20 wickets in the absence of injured pace duo Josh Hazlewood and Pat Cummins.

Pakistan vs Australia: Mitchell Starc ready to play as sole pacer should visitors opt for three-pronged spin attack

File image of Australia pacer Mitchell Starc. Reuters

Cummins played the lone paceman role in Bangladesh last year when Australia selected three specialist spinners for the first time in 40 years and the 28-year-old Starc is poised to emulate his fellow quick against Pakistan.

"I haven't had to do that before," Starc told cricket.com.au on Tuesday.

"If I need to bowl long spells and be the only out-and-out quick, then I can definitely fill that role. We've got guys like (all-rounder) Mitch Marsh who's back bowling now, I'm sure he'll be a big part of the team with bat and ball.

"We've got other part-timers to call on if need be. If conditions suit spin and they go down the road of the extra spinners, I can change my role slightly again."

Starc, who tested a new run-up to prevent further injuries but retained his old one as he was losing pace, went wicketless in his first test in the region but has been Australia's most successful bowler in South Asia since that 2013 match in India.

The left-arm paceman took 24 wickets on the 2016 tour of Sri Lanka, the biggest haul by an Australian in a three-test series, and will look to replicate that form in Dubai, which hosts the first test from 7 October, and Abu Dhabi 11 days later.

"It's something I'll probably look at and try to take little things out of to take into this series on the subcontinent with where and how I bowled — the lengths and some reverse swing," Starc added.

"In the UAE, we'll use the Kookaburra ball like we did in Sri Lanka — hopefully we can get it moving around and I can get a few wickets and help the team out."

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Updated Date: Sep 25, 2018 17:49:00 IST






Rank Team Points Rating
1 India 4659 119
2 New Zealand 2829 109
3 England 4366 104
4 South Africa 3177 102
5 Australia 3270 99
6 Sri Lanka 3795 95
Rank Team Points Rating
1 England 6745 125
2 India 7071 122
3 New Zealand 4837 112
4 Australia 5543 111
5 South Africa 5193 110
6 Pakistan 5019 98
Rank Team Points Rating
1 Pakistan 7748 277
2 England 4253 266
3 South Africa 4720 262
4 India 8620 261
5 Australia 5471 261
6 New Zealand 4784 252