Australian all-rounder Marcus Stoinis has declared he’s fully ready to bat and bowl as selection pressure looms from his “little brother” Cameron Green ahead of the T20 World Cup defence.
Stoinis has been included in a revamped line-up set to play England in Perth on Sunday with selectors opting not to send the first-choice bowling attack west to limit their workload heading into the World Cup defence in November.
Pat Cummins, Mitchell Starc, Josh Hazlewood, Adam Zampa as well as Glenn Maxwell, who all played in Wednesday’s win over the West Indies, won’t make the 5½ flight from the Gold Coast for Sunday’s game.
The tight turnaround of less than 48 hours between Friday’s match in Brisbane has moved selectors to call on Stoinis, Ashton Agar, Kane Richardson, Mitchell Swepson and Nathan Ellis to take on England.
Mitch Marsh, who made his return from injury on Wednesday, will also head to Perth.
Stoinis has been battling a side strain which has opened the door for Green’s potential inclusion but the World Cup winner said he was ready to perform and could even have played the West Indies.
“I had a good solid bowl yesterday and our physio ticked all that off. Everyone is pretty happy,” Stoinis said on Thursday.
“I could have played (the West Indies) but speaking with the coaches and physio staff it wasn;t worth it in terms of the travel over there.
“We’ll have three games within five days or so and we have a World Cup coming up so these are just preparation game.”
Stoinis said selectors had told him he needed to be able to bowl to be part of the World Cup and didn’t rule out Green being included despite being out of the 15-man squad for the tournament.
“We’ve got a brand we want to play and between myself, Mitch (Marsh) and possibly Greeny that all-rounder spot needs to be able to bowl and get the overs in similar to last World Cup, and batting in the middle order,” he said.
“You are always fighting for your spot no matter what, in international sport and in a team like ours, it’s a compliment for Australian cricket.”
Stoinis said he was “proud” of fellow West Australian Green who has made a huge immediate impact after his recent T20 games against India.
“Cameron Green, he’s like our little brother over here,” he said.
“I play club cricket with him, when I do, we are proud of him, he’s got such a good future ahead of him., you don’t even need to talk about the future, he’s good right now.
Those players who don’t travel west will instead stay on the east coast and be used in the second and third clashes with England in Canberra next week.
“The high-performance team and selectors have planned these matches to ensure our squad get to the World Cup fresh and ready to perform,” selection chief George Bailey said.
“Some squad members travelled to Perth early to begin preparations slightly earlier than the main squad and a handful of others will not make the trip to Perth.
“With some players remaining on the east coast, it provides further opportunity for Nathan Ellis and Daniel Sams who both performed well in India.
“Likewise, Mitchell Swepson was a part of last year’s World Cup squad and continues to provide good depth in our T20 spin bowling department.”
Australia‘s pre-World Cup squad shuffle
Second T20 v West Indies, Gabba, October 7
OUT: Mitch Marsh
First T20 v England, Perth, October 9
IN: Ashton Agar, Marcus Stoinis, Kane Richardson, Mitch Marsh, Mitchell Swepson, Nathan Ellis
OUT: Adam Zampa, Mitchell Starc, Josh Hazlewood, Pat Cummins, Glenn Maxwell
Second and Third T20s v England, Canberra, October 12 and 14
IN: Adam Zampa, Mitchell Starc, Josh Hazlewood, Pat Cummins, Glenn Maxwell