The Australian fans are buzzing with excitement regarding the possible re-emergence of the four-man pace quartet in Test cricket which was last seen during the glorious fast bowling heydeys of 70’s, and 80’s when West Indies ruled the cricketing map.
The upcoming Ashes 2017 may become a dream come true moment for many fast bowling fans, as Australia promises to put together four of their best pacemen – Mitchell Starc, Josh Hazlewood, Pat Cummins and James Pattinson – together in the starting XI when they take on England later this year.
Spearhead Unsure of the Event Taking Place
While the prospect of the fast bowling unit playing together looks mouth-watering, the Australian setup is currently left to deal with a couple of tough decisions to make. The first being fitness and the other is the presence of in-form off-spinner Nathan Lyon. These two factors make the chances of the “Big four” thing happening very weak.
Australia head coach Darren Lehmann had already confirmed that Lyon would play in the opening Ashes Test at the Gabba on November 23 following the offie’s 22 wickets series performance in the two-Test tour of Bangladesh earlier this month.
Moreover, among the ‘Big Four’ quicks, barring Pat Cummins, others need time to become fit and active. Josh Hazlewood (side), Mitchell Starc (foot) and James Pattinson (back) all dealing with their respective injuries.
“The way Nathan has bowled it’s been absolutely fantastic the last couple of years,” Hazlewood told cricket.com.au while speaking at the 2017-18 MILO Junior Cricket season launch in Sydney.
“Just for the balance of the team, it’s always handy to have a spinner there and probably only fit three quicks in.”
Frightening Thoughts for England
Mitchell Johnson’s fury during the 2013/14 Ashes is a well-documented story. Now, as Australia fiddling with the idea of Big Four, England will probably be worried about the plans which would be needed to deal with the challenge.
The quartet can perhaps dismantle the young English batting group without much fuss if things fall in lime of the hosts.
England Ashes campaign will rely on captain Joe Root and opener Alastair Cook who will be the batting pillar, as others names like Mark Stoneman, Tom Westley and Dawid Malan in the batting lineup have just entered the Test arena.
“(England) have got a couple of experienced guys at the top but through that middle order is a little bit inexperienced” Hazlewood said.
“The earlier we can get those guys in and out in the middle the better. They’re obviously going to rely a bit on Cook and Root, so there’s some quality players there so it’s going to be hard yards.”