Cricket: Injured Starc ruled out of India series

Australia’s pace spearhead Mitchell Starc was ruled out of the ongoing tour of India on Friday after suffering a stress fracture to his right foot, the team physiotherapist said.

“Mitchell experienced some pain in his right foot during the second Test in Bangalore which unfortunately had not subsided a few days after the Test as we had hoped,” the physio David Beakley said in a Cricket Australia statement.

“We made the decision to scan his foot in Bangalore this morning and unfortunately it has revealed a stress fracture.”

Starc, who is also one of the world’s leading allrounders, would therefore “be unavailable for the remainder” of the tour and would “return home to Australia to start his rehabilitation”.

The 27-year-old is the second Australian to be ruled out of the series between the world’s top two sides after Mitchell Marsh had to return home following a deterioration of a long-running shoulder injury.

Starc has been hampered by injuries during the course of his career but has emerged as a key player for his side in all formats of the game and is ranked in the world’s top 10 in both Test and ODI cricket.

Ahead of the series, Indian captain Virat Kohli singled out Starc as the tourists’ dangerman, saying he “is a world class bowler”.

“He has learnt the art of reverse swing and bowling with the old ball as well. It’s amazing to see, the way he has developed his skills,” Kohli added.

Although Starc has only taken five wickets in the first two Tests, his lower-order half century in the first contest in Pune proved to be turning point in the match.

The series, which resumes next week with a match in Ranchi, has been marred by a row between Kohli and his opposite number Steve Smith.


© Agence France-Presse