Mitchell Johnson still has a future in Test cricket and the 30-year-old could be in line for a recall, Australia's new fast-bowling coach has said.
Allister de Winter said Johnson's recent form could spell an end to a frustrating period in the wilderness for the left-arm quick, local media reported on Tuesday. "He's probably still in the mix," de Winter told reporters at Bellerive. "I think he's started the season really well in terms of Sheffield Shield cricket. "He bowled very well in our tour to Dubai in the one-day tournament."
Johnson went from being one of the best fast bowlers in world cricket to something of a laughing stock as his accuracy deserted him in recent seasons. He was ribbed mercilessly by England's 'Barmy Army' supporters for his wayward bowling during the 2010-11 Ashes series, despite returning decent figures.
De Winter has backed Johnson to come good again. "He's in a really good headspace," he said. "He's really fit and he's bowling as well as he has for quite a long time. It's great to have him back in the mix and it gives us a great choice when it comes to selection, particularly with his left-arm bowling."
Johnson, who has taken 190 Test wickets at an average of 31.29, played the last of his 47 Tests against South Africa last year, taking just two wickets. Australia take on top-ranked South Africa at home in a three-Test series beginning on November 9.