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‘Run in and intimidate with pace’ – Starc ready for Australia’s home season

by Wisden Staff 2 minute read

After a long and mixed summer in England, when he slipped down the pecking order in the fast bowling attack, Australia fast bowler Mitchell Starc is looking forward to a return season where he can “intimidate with pace”.

Starc, with a record 27 scalps, finished as the leading wicket-taker in the 2019 World Cup for the second consecutive edition of the tournament. However, he played just one Ashes Test in the five-match series; despite scoring an unbeaten half-century and returning four wickets in a win that resulted in Australia retaining the Ashes, he wasn’t an automatic selection in the XI.

The 29-year-old is now ready to swap the Dukes ball with the Kookaburra and bowl with searing pace on the high-bounce tracks Down Under.

“I’ll be trying to get back into the mindset of run in and bowl fast and intimidate with pace, and hopefully get a bit of swing. The Kookaburra ball doesn’t do as much as the Dukes ball and the wickets are generally flatter in Australia (and) it probably won’t seam around as much,” Starc told cricket.com.au.

Mitchell Starc

Starc was the leading wicket-taker at the 2019 World Cup

“So that’s a little bit of a point of difference I can generate, those high speeds and get those batsmen jumping around. I think I developed my skills for English bowling and I was pretty happy with how I went about my work over there.”

Before the 2019 World Cup, Starc had claimed just 11 ODI wickets in eight matches at 38.27 in England. He changed his approach ahead of the tournament, keeping in mind the fact that all-out pace won’t work in England. The result was spectacular: 27 wickets in the tournament, including two five-wicket hauls, at an average of 18.59.

“I took a different mindset of not trying to bowl the way I do in Australia because the wickets are different, the balls are different,” he explained. “With the wickets being slower you try and get more seam movement, a bit more through the air and not just try and run in and only focus on bowling fast,” he explained.

“I was pretty happy with how that side of my game developed over there and that’s something that at times perhaps I can bring into my game in Australia. But it’s different conditions, and hopefully, faster and bouncier wickets where you can run in and try and bowl fast.”

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