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“Going to go with Mitchell Starc”: Brett Lee favours Mitchell Starc for Brisbane Test despite calls of Jhye Richardson’s Test comeback

Dixit Bhargav

"Going to go with Mitchell Starc": Brett Lee favours Mitchell Starc for Brisbane Test despite calls of Jhye Richardson's Test comeback

Brett Lee favours Mitchell Starc: The former Australia speedster doesn’t want to tinker with a tried and tested bowling combination.

Former Australia fast bowler Brett Lee has picked Usman Khawaja ahead of Travis Head as Australia’s No. 5 batter for the first Ashes 2021-22 Test scheduled to begin from December 8 at the Gabba. With Alex Carey getting the nod ahead of Josh Inglis, Australia are left with a solitary conundrum in the batting department ahead of the Brisbane Test.

“Travis Head is a phenomenal cricketer and can definitely play a huge role for Australia moving forward, but I just think with that experience of [Usman] Khawaja with his temperament, he’s got a lot to offer. I think he’s probably just nudging in front of Head,” Lee was quoted as saying during SEN’s Breakfast With Vossy.

It is worth mentioning that both the left-handed batters have been in form in the ongoing Sheffield Shield season. While Khawaja (second-highest run-scorer this season) has scored 460 runs in eight innings at an average of 65.71 including two centuries and half-centuries each, Head has scored 394 runs at 49.25 including two centuries and a half-century in the same number of innings.

Open to bat anywhere in the Australian Test XI, Khawaja has never batted at No. 5 in his 76 Test innings. Head, on the other hand, has batted at No. 5 19 out 31 times scoring 633 runs at 37.23 including a century and three half-centuries.

Brett Lee favours Mitchell Starc for Brisbane Test

Fast bowler Mitchell Starc’s spot in the Test XI has come under the radar in the build-up to the first Test. Many prominent voices including that of legendary spinner Shane Warne are considering Jhye Richardson ahead of Starc for the third fast bowler role. Lee, on the contrary, has lent support behind Starc on the back of his experience.

“Pat Cummins, the skipper, and Josh Hazlewood, they’re definitely two of the first picked. And I’m going to go with Mitchell Starc. You need experience when you’re playing in such a big series. A lot of people are calling for [Starc’s] head on the chopping block. I’m not going down that road,” Lee said.

Highlighting Starc’s ability to bowl at an express pace like himself, Lee remained open to dropping Starc but only if he doesn’t perform in the first two Tests.

“I’m going to say Mitchell Starc can produce an incredible Ashes series if he can get the ball to swing back at 150km/h, which he’s very, very capable of.

“If I’m wrong and he doesn’t perform in the first couple of Tests, well [it’s] fair enough [for him to be dropped]. I just back Mitchell Starc,” Lee added.

About the author

Dixit Bhargav

Dixit Bhargav


Born and brought up in Pathankot, Dixit Bhargav is an engineering and sports management graduate who works as a Cricket Editor at The SportsRush. Having written more than 10,000 articles across more than five years at TSR, his first cricketing memory dates back to 2002 when former India captain Sourav Ganguly had waved his jersey at the historic Lord’s balcony. What followed for an 8-year-old was an instant adulation for both Ganguly and the sport. The optimist in him is waiting for the day when Punjab Kings will win their maiden Indian Premier League title. When not watching cricket, he is mostly found in a cinema hall watching a Punjabi movie.

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