Australia’s Mitchell Starc, who has not played in the IPL since 2015, asserted that he has, in the recent past, skipped IPL to use the window to keep himself mentally and physically fresh, but claimed that he will keep assessing the stance. Starc’s last IPL was IPL 2015, in which he took 20 wickets.
Last week, through his yorker-fest against Andre Russell, Mitchell Starc showed the world why he is still one of the best T20 bowlers in the world, but the left-armer is different from every other elite white-ball bowler in international cricket, for he does not play in the IPL. The Australian talisman last featured in the T20 extravaganza six years ago, in 2015, and a combination of injuries and other factors have kept the left-armer - a hot commodity in the shortest format - away from the league.
Starc will not be taking part in the second half of IPL 2021, either, but the 31-year-old insisted that he will keep assessing his stance. Speaking to the media ahead of the ODI series against the Windies, Starc revealed that he’s continued to skip IPL to keep himself mentally and physically fresh, but confirmed that the door is not completely shut on a potential comeback in the future.
"I'm a multi-format player and those are a few weeks where we can get away from the game and refresh mentally and physically. Alyssa, my wife, plays as well and we have conflicting schedules. A lot of the time that's the only time we can spend at home together,” Starc said, reported Cricbuzz.
"Over the last few years I've used that time so I can be at my best or ready to go for Australian duty and not have to pick and choose through tours. That was certainly the case with the previous IPL and I'll keep assessing it year by year and see what the schedule looks like and where I'm at with my cricket and my body and see how we go from there."
A host of senior cricketers, including David Warner, Steve Smith and Glenn Maxwell, opted to skip the Windies tour for personal reasons, and the withdrawals handicapped the Aussies, who rather unsurprisingly ended up losing the T20Is 4-1 to a hungry Windies unit. Starc refused to comment on the senior players’ decision to sit out the tour, but stressed that the three-match ODI series, just like the T20Is, will provide a golden opportunity for youngsters to potential nail-down spots in the starting XI.
"I've got my own personal views but, at the same time, each of those guys are gonna have different situations, which, I guess, determine their decisions. Obviously you throw in conversations about different bubbles and quarantine periods and the like. Obviously, that would have come into it with some guys' decisions.
"Ultimately, we're here with a strong group of Australian guys, some young inexperienced guys with a chance to perform and potentially lock down some World Cup spots. So yeah sure you've got some guys still at home doing whatever they're doing throughout the time, you've got some young exciting cricketers [who have] performed through domestic cricket, now they've got their chance to nail down that spot so it's exciting for them.
"I guess the depth of Australian cricket giving these guys some experiences, playing against a really strongly West Indian side, certainly in the T20s and now moving on to the One-Dayers so, yeah, I guess I've certainly got my own opinions that I'll keep to myself, but for the moment it is what it is, we've got this group here, we're looking to still win series, and we've got some things to improve on from the T20s which we can do in One-Day games."
The three-match ODI series will commence on Tuesday, July 20, and a series win will see Australia consolidating third spot in the ODI Super League table.