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Mitchell Starc is an absolute nightmare to face with the pink ball: Tim Paine

By Bet Barter

December 17, 2020

Australian skipper Tim Paine has indicated that Mitchell Starc is eager to have a go at the Indian side. The first pink-ball test match kicked-off today in Adelaide. The left-arm pacer had withdrawn from the T20 series against India citing personal reasons. 

However, Tim Paine has confirmed that the fast bowler is in good shape and prepared for the series. Paine issued an indirect warning to the visitors by saying that Starc has an excellent record in pink-ball Test matches. On Tuesday, the Australian cricket board shared a video of Australia’s net sessions. In that, Mitchell Starc was seen bowling to Marnus Labuschagne.

The left-arm seamer looked all pumped up as the first ball he bowled was one brutal bouncer. Labuschagne could do nothing but duck that kind of ball. Mitchell Starc is going to be one of the key bowlers in the Australian bowling line-up when they take on India in the four-Test series.

Mitchell Starc’s outstanding pink-ball stats and records

The 30-year-old is the leading wicket-taker in pink-ball Tests at the Adelaide Oval so far. In four Tests, Starc has picked up 24 wickets at an average of 18 with two five-wicket hauls. In 2019, his 6 for 66 against Pakistan are the best bowling figures at Adelaide in Day-Night encounters to date.

Mitchell Starc has starred in seven pink-ball Tests. All the matches have taken place in Australia. The pacer has picked up 42 wickets at an average of 19.23 with three five-wicket hauls. Australia needs Starc to be at his best as they looked to avenge their defeat to India at home back in 2018.

However, left-arm pacers have always been successful in day-night Test matches in Australia. Considering New Zealander Trent Boult and Pakistan’s Shahin Afridi have all been good performers.

The Indian side lacks variety in their pace attack as they do not have a left-arm pacer in their squad. But India can have some expectations from Jasprit Bumrah. He was the highest wicket-taker in the 4-match series two years ago picking up 21 wickets.

The hosts played the first-ever pink-ball Test match back in 2015. Australia has been at the forefront of day-night games ever since. Indeed, all their matches have been in Australia so far, but the Aussies have a 100%-win record with pink-ball. Surprisingly, no men’s day-night Test match has ended up in a draw to date.

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