Mitchell Starc’s ascendency as one of the most feared bowlers of recent times has been phenomenal indeed. The New South Wales pacer has simply demolished batting line ups and if his current form is anything to go by, the New Zealand batsmen better watch out. New Zealand’s evergreen skipper Brendon McCullum recently admitted that his side was cautious of the threat possessed by Starc. McCullum also felt that Starc could eventually turn out to be the difference between the two sides.

“He is a guy who has developed incredibly quickly at this level,” McCullum said. “Four years ago we came over and he was pretty early in his career. The emergence of him between then and now, he’s a completely different bowler. Where he sits in world cricket – he’s probably one of the most feared bowlers around. But if you want to win in Australia, you don’t expect people to hand it to you.”

“He possesses skills that transfer into Test cricket as well. His ability to bowl quick and use his bouncer and then follow it up with his yorker, like we’ve seen a lot in one-day cricket, but we’ve also seen a little bit of recently in Test cricket as well. They’re pretty decent weapons to have as a quick bowler,” McCullum said, indicating Starc’s threat.

Meanwhile, Australia’s captain Steve Smith also lavished praises on Mitchell Starc, who recently wrecked havoc in the Matador Cup, with an unbelievable average of 8.1, while taking 26 wickets. “He has bowled terrifically throughout the one-day series and the first Shield game last week,” Smith said. “He has bowled good pace, he is swinging the ball, and I think with Mitchell one thing I’ve been most impressed with is when the ball’s not doing anything he’s found a way to make sure he’s getting the ball across the right-hander and build a bit of pressure.”

“I think that’s going to be really key for us if the ball’s not swinging. But if it is, what he’s been doing really well is swinging the ball late, at pace and hitting the stumps. I think in the Matador Cup he got 17 bowleds. That’s something he’s done really well,” Smith said. 

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