Eyes on Starc as Australia brace for tough England challenge - Cricket News | Cricket Updates | Match Report

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Friday, June 7, 2024

Eyes on Starc as Australia brace for tough England challenge

 Starc suffered cramps during the game against Oman.

Starc suffered cramps during the game against Oman. © AFP

It is still early days in the competition but England will be slightly concerned. Their abandoned game against Scotland and the latter's subsequent win against Namibia which has helped them top the table, has opened up several possibilities in the group. A loss to Australia will only make things that much harder for the defending champions who will be hoping to avoid any slip-ups against their arch-rivals when they face off in the 17th match of the 2024 T20 World Cup.

Australia were made to sweat by Oman who used spin and the slow-natured Barbados wicket to give them some nervous moments but the 2021 champions saw through that thanks to David Warner's measured approach and Marcus Stoinis's all-round show. The all-out attack that Travis Head had spoken about at the start of the tournament may not always work and Australia might look at re-tuning their methods based on what's on offer from the pitches.

England also played their opening match in Barbados where they bowled 10 overs at Scotland and were unable to make any inroad. Mark Wood and Jofra Archer were economical but Adil Rashid and Chris Jordan were both expensive. But England won't be looking too much into this but focus on how they collectively adapt to the conditions. A no-result against Scotland and not having played a warm-up game, England have their work cut out.

When: Saturday, June 8 at 1:00 PM Local time (10:30 PM IST, 5:00 PM GMT)

Where: Kensington Oval, Bridgetown, Barbados

What to expect: In the four matches hosted by Barbados so far in this World Cup, including the abandoned England-Scotland game, Australia's 164 against Oman is the highest first innings total. In the previous game, Scotland went past Namibia's total of 155 in 18.3 overs. A total of 170-180 could turn out to be a winning total at this venue. Rain is forecast in the morning and around the match time.

Head to head: England 11 - 10 Australia. England have an advantage over Australia in T20 World Cups as well, having won two out of three, with their last encounter in 2022 getting washed out.

Teams watch

Australia

Injury/availability: Mitchell Starc suffered cramps during the game against Oman and walked off the field after bowling three overs. But the left-arm pacer participated in the net session ahead of the match. Pat Cummins might get a look in if they are looking to rest Starc, or keep both of them and leave out Nathan Ellis.

Tactics & Matchups: Among the Australian bowlers in the current squad, Marcus Stoinis, Pat Cummins and Nathan Ellis have kept Jos Buttler quiet, with the batter having strike rates of 87.5, 114.7 and 114.3 against them respectively and has been dismissed once each. With England's batting order comprising right-handers in their top six, the inclusion of Ashton Agar could serve Australia well.

Probable XI: David Warner, Travis Head, Mitchell Marsh (c), Glenn Maxwell, Marcus Stoinis, Tim David, Matthew Wade (wk), Mitchell Starc, Pat Cummins, Adam Zampa, Josh Hazlewood

England

Injury/availability: England do not have any injury concerns at the moment.

Tactics & Matchups:

Jofra Archer has dismissed David Warner twice in 12 deliveries for only 12 runs. Chris Jordan has dismissed Glenn Maxwell thrice in 32 deliveries while Adil Rashid, with three dismissals in 32 balls, is a good matchup against Marcus Stoinis. Rashid has also accounted for Maxwell twice but has gone for 72 runs off 47 balls. Mark Wood has also dismissed Stoinis twice in 29 balls.

Probable XI: Jos Buttler (c & wk), Philip Salt, Will Jacks, Jonny Bairstow, Harry Brook, Moeen Ali, Liam Livingstone, Chris Jordan, Jofra Archer, Adil Rashid, Mark Wood

Did you know?

- Jos Buttler (3), Phil Salt (5), Will Jacks (3) and Harry Brook (3) have collectively been dismissed 14 times by left-arm spin

- Jos Buttler has scored 542 runs in 15 innings against Australia, with five 50-plus scores. Buttler last eight scores vs Australia: 46, 61, 44, 77*, 71*, 68, 17 & 65

- Marcus Stoinis has scored 627 runs at an average of 31.35 and a strike rate of 140.26,

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