And now, things get really difficult for Australia.
Mitchell Starc has been ruled out of Australia's tour of India with a stress fracture in his left foot. Having just lost the second Test against India in Bengalulru, Australia now faces an even bigger task trying to pull off a rare series win in India. The series is currently locked at one-all.
After being named Player of the Tournament at the 2015 World Cup, Starc was an absolute superstar for Australia in Test cricket in 2016, and took out the gong for Test Player of the Year at the recent Allan Border Medal night.
Starc has continued that form in 2017 with both bat and ball. Indeed, he averages a healthy 25 with the bat and is currently ranked fourth in the official ICC list of all-rounders -- not bad for a bloke who's considered a bowler who can bat a bit.
Mitchell Starc has a stress fracture. Out of tour. Australian team has just stress.— Jarrod Kimber (@ajarrodkimber) 10 de março de 2017
But it's with the ball that he will be missed. Like all bowlers, Starc has his days where he runs through an opposition lineup. But it's his ability to take the hard wickets here and there that his captain really values.
There are moments when Starc produces something out of nothing. Sometimes it's an unplayable reverse-swinging yorker. Other times it's a bouncer that climbs unexpectedly on a batsman -- catching a glove or edge on the way to the keeper.
"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," team physiotherapist David Beakley said.
"We made the decision to scan his foot in Bangalore this morning and unfortunately it has revealed a stress fracture.
"Subsequently, this means Mitchell will be unavailable for the remainder of the Qantas Tour of India and will return home to Australia to start his rehabilitation."
Starc's likely replacement for the third Test in the north-eastern city of Ranchi will be Jackson Bird.
Meanwhile, Australia's Mitchell quota is now down to one -- uncapped spinner Mitchell Swepson -- after Mitchell March went home with a shoulder injury earlier this week.
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