T20 World Cup: Australian captain Mitch Marsh to be fit for tournament opener but may not bowl

Jackson Barrett
The Nightly
2 Min Read
Australia’s Twenty20 captain Mitch Marsh will be fit for the start of next month’s World Cup.
Australia’s Twenty20 captain Mitch Marsh will be fit for the start of next month’s World Cup. Credit: Riley Churchman/The West Australian

Australia’s Twenty20 captain Mitch Marsh will be fit for the start of next month’s World Cup but is likely to start the tournament as a specialist batter.

Coach Andrew McDonald revealed on Tuesday the star West Australian all-rounder was behind in his recovery from the hamstring injury that ended his Indian Premier League season early.

Marsh has been recovering at home in Perth after playing only the opening rounds of the Delhi Capitals’ campaign.

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Australia has now selected two travelling reserves — red-hot opener Jake Fraser-McGurk and Adelaide Strikers skipper Matt Short — as cover, with Marsh and David Warner both set to enter camp under an injury cloud.

McDonald is confident Marsh will be fit for Australia’s first game of the tournament against Oman on June 6, but said staff are still working through his bowling capacity.

“He will be fit for the start of the tournament, yes, will he be bowling? That’s the big question,” he told SEN.

“It’s been a little bit slower than we would have liked, we felt like it was just going to be a straight up three-to-four week hamstring, it probably hasn’t progressed that way.

Delhi Capitals' Mitchell Marsh bowls a delivery during the Indian Premier League cricket match between Delhi Capitals and Chennai Super Kings in Visakhapatnam, India, Sunday, March. 31, 2024.(AP Photo/ Surjeet Yadav))
Mitch Marsh bowls for the Delhi Capitals. Credit: RM/AP

“He is a little bit behind where we would like him with the ball, but he will take part in the practice games ... as a batter, he will captain, clearly, those two teams there, but we will probably slow-play the bowling a little bit and you will see that unfold as the tournament progresses.

“You have got to take care of the captain, he’s an important cog, so we’re probably not willing to risk the bowling as early as what we thought it might have been.”

McDonald admitted Marsh’s bowling “wouldn’t be in high demand” if Australia stuck to its recent short-form structure of three quicks and a spinner, with Glenn Maxwell likely to take on overs on low and slow wickets in the West Indies.

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