Australia’s ‘Big Four’ should play the Ashes, suggests Mitchell Starc

Australia’s ‘Big Four’ should play the Ashes, suggests Mitchell Starc

Starc wants all the four fast bowlers and Nathan Lyon to form the bowling attack.

Mitchell Starc
Australian cricketer Mitchell Starc. (Photo by ISHARA S.KODIKARA/AFP/Getty Images)

Australian left-arm fast bowler Mitchell Starc opines that a bowling attack with Australia’s ‘Big Four’ and Nathan Lyon can be fit into a Test XI, with the pace quartet’s batting ability instrumental to such a selection move. The re-emergence of Pat Cummins and James Pattinson has others excited or apprehensive at the prospect of that duo joining Josh Hazlewood and Starc to form a dangerous four-man pace attack.

While some may argue the inclusion of 4 bowlers may hinder the batting, in Starc’s opinion their capabilities with the bat can factor into the argument. He put up the numbers to back his claims as well stating that someone like Pattinson whose batting abilities are rather ignored has an average of 80 in 10 FC matches.

“It’s an interesting one. I think the fact that we can all bat presents a stronger case for that. I can’t see Nathan Lyon being left out – you have to pick him, he is a world-class spinner. But Pattinson is averaging about 80 in his last 10 first-class games; Josh and Cummins are very capable with the bat, and I know one end of the bat. I think that presents a stronger case, that we can bat, and when called upon, we have been able to do that (bat well) for Australia,” Starc said.

When Australia visited India in February, the left-arm pacer played crucial knocks of 61 and 30 in Australia’s first Test win here, and with the bat, he hit seven sixes during his 84 against Pakistan in the Boxing Day Test last summer. The 27-year-old averages 24.81 with the bat, which is a sign of a good all-rounder.

Cummins, on the other hand, has made significant strides with the willow and Hazlewood helped Adam Voges to a maiden Test century two years ago in the Caribbean. Given the form Pattinson and Starc are in, the concept of using five bowlers seems possible.

It will be interesting to see if the selectors pay heed to what Starc has said, but don’t be surprised if you see all of these featured in the Ashes.