‘Worst I’ve seen him bowl’: Warne rips in

Australian cricket legend Shane Warne believes it’s time Mitchell Starc is dumped from taking the new ball in favour for Pat Cummins.

The left arm fast bowler had a lean 2018 claiming just 17 top order wickets at 47 runs apiece with the new ball, prompting calls for him to be replaced at the bowling crease.

So far in the Test series against India, Starc has claimed 12 wickets at an average of 27.16 — the highest average out of the Australian four-prong bowling attack.

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“At the moment, this is the worst I have seen Mitchell Starc bowl,” Warne wrote for the Herald Sun.

“He keeps saying he’s bowling well, that he just misses on the odd over here or there.

“But 17 top order wickets at an average of 47 with the new ball, it just isn’t good enough.

“I don’t think he has looked anything like the Mitchell Starc we have known over the past couple of years.”

Warne suggested Cummins should partner Josh Hazlewood with the new ball, given he had “done his time” and had claimed 30 wickets at an average of 23 against top six batsman.

Cummins was the hero in the third Test for Australia, ripping out India in the second innings at the MCG, claiming six wickets and scoring 63 with the bat in the final innings of the match.

The spin bowling great explained while Australia’s batting woes haven’t helped the side, the bowlers also had their fair share of the blame.

“Against top six batsmen in all matches in 2018, Mitchell Starc has taken 17 wickets at 47, Josh Hazlewood 18 wickets at 40, Nathan Lyon 29 wickets at 43 and Pat Cummins 33 wickets at 23,” Warne said.

“Apart from Cummins, it’s not very good.

“In every instance, from the first innings of almost every Test this year, Australia has been behind the game.”

Warne also downplayed chatter about Starc being unable to swing the ball since “sandpaper-gate”, explaining it was his lack of form and that when he was in form he would swing both the red and white ball to claim wickets.

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