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India vs Australia | I'd be Surprised if Starc, Cummins & Hazlewood Feature in ODI Series: Ponting

Cricketnext Staff |January 3, 2019, 2:46 PM IST
India vs Australia | I'd be Surprised if Starc, Cummins & Hazlewood Feature in ODI Series: Ponting

Former Australian skipper Ricky Ponting does not expect the pace trio of Mitchell Starc, Josh Hazlewood and Pat Cummins, who have bowled bulk of the overs in the ongoing four-match Test series, to feature in the forthcoming three-match One-Day International series against India.

"I'd be really surprised if any of these three actually play in that one-day series," Ponting told

"It's vital we keep those three guys fit, and with Nathan Lyon as well. They are the backbone, they are the attack we're going to have going into the Sri Lankan series.

"They'll be put in cotton wool after this Test match and given the right amount of break and time to get ready for the Sri Lanka Tests."

The three ODIs will be played on January 12, 15 and 18, and then the focus will again shift to Test cricket with Australia hosting Sri Lanka for two five-day matches, starting January 24 in Brisbane.

Hazlewood (137.1 overs), Cummins (136) and Starc (130.5) have featured in all the four Tests against India and have toiled hard in this series. Mitchell Marsh played in the previous Test and bowled 26 overs, The all-rounder, however, was dropped from the fourth encounter and was replaced by Marnus Labuschagne. The leg-spinner proved ineffective on the opening day, giving away 25 runs off four overs.

Ponting said of Labuschagne doesn't come good in the remaining days, Hazlewood, Cummins and Starc once again might end up doing extra shifts.

"I was surprised Mitch Marsh hasn't played this game," Ponting said. "Looking at the pitch, it looked flat and like it was going to be hard work for the bowlers.

"But now that workload is going to come back on our three quicks.

"If Marnus can't bowl a bit better than he did in his first over they are going to have to bowl a lot more overs than anyone would have wanted them to."

If selectors do decide to rest the pace trio, Ponting feels Australia still have good options who can do the job for them.

"If they (the Test trio) don't play then you've got to look at the next string of one-day bowlers, probably (Billy) Stanlake, (Jason) Behrendorff, (Nathan) Coulter-Nile … maybe Michael Neser, someone who has been on the fringes the last couple of years," he said.

"(Marcus) Stoinis and Mitch Marsh will probably be in the one-day squad so they can take bit of that bowling as well."

"Riley Meredith has been quite impressive in the Big Bash. I know it's only four overs, but he's bowled good pace in those games and taken wickets.

"Kane Richardson has taken wickets as well for the Renegades. We know he's played a fair bit of one-day cricket for Australia over the past four or five seasons."

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4 South Africa 4647 111
5 Australia 4805 109
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2 England 4253 266
3 South Africa 4196 262
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5 India 7273 260
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