Starc replaces Johnson

2015-01-05 07:47
Mitchell Starc (Gallo)

Sydney - Australia replaced injured Mitchell Johnson with another left-arm paceman Mitchell Starc on Monday in their only change for this week's fourth and final Test against India.

Skipper Steve Smith said Johnson, who has a hamstring strain, would "probably" have played at the Sydney Cricket Ground match beginning Tuesday had the four-Test series been in the balance.

"I think there's no secret there's a pretty big summer coming up," Smith said.

"We want him to be fresh for the one-dayers and World Cup coming up. We don't want to risk him."

Johnson, 33, who bowled long spells during the first three Tests against India, had some right hamstring soreness during the Boxing Day Test and had not fully recovered since then, CA physiotherapist Alex Kountouris said on Sunday.

Starc's confirmation in the team puts him ahead of paceman Peter Siddle and second-choice spinner Ashton Agar, who had been included in the squad.

Australia regained the Border-Gavaskar Trophy last week after India hung on for a tense draw in the third Test in Melbourne. Australia won the first two Tests in Adelaide and Brisbane.

Smith was forthright when asked if he expected the niggle between the two sides to taper off this week.

"It's still another Test match for us, we'll be looking to win," Smith said.

"We're still going to play that aggressive brand of cricket that we've been playing the whole summer.

"I don't think we're going to change anything."

Shane Watson was too ill to bat in the nets on Sunday, but he bowled and batted on Monday.

The allrounder was named in the starting eleven and is expected to play on Tuesday.

"I spoke to him last night. He said he was feeling better," Smith said.

Having already sealed a series win, Smith added he would be "a bit more aggressive" regarding potential declarations at the SCG.

Australia set the tourists a 384-run victory target off just 70 overs on the final day in Melbourne, after batting throughout the morning session and declaring at lunchtime.

The match finished in a draw with India on 174 for six.

Smith, who was captaining Australia for a second Test while Michael Clarke is injured, was questioned about his declaration call at his post-match press conference and said: "We really didn't want to give India a sniff (of victory)."

Australia - David Warner, Chris Rogers, Shane Watson, Steve Smith, Shaun Marsh, Joe Burns, Brad Haddin, Ryan Harris, Mitchell Starc, Nathan Lyon, Josh Hazlewood.

Read more on:    mitchell starc  |  cricket

What To Read Next


Read News24’s Comments Policy publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.
Live Video Streaming
Video Highlights
Sport Talk

Love 2 Meet
Sport24 on Twitter

Follow Sport24 news on Twitter


With the Absa Premiership in full swing, who will be crowned champions when all is said and done? Will Mamelodi Sundowns defend their title? Or can Kaizer Chiefs, Orlando Pirates or Bidvest Wits mount a serious challenge? Stay glued to Sport24 to find out!

Latest blogs

Under fire Proteas coach Russell Domingo has blamed player workloads and fatigue as the reason for the national team's woeful showing in the Tri Series in the Caribbean. Your thoughts?

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.