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'I would pick only one between them': Former Australia captain suggests Nathan Ellis to be picked in T20 WC

Australia will start T20 World Cup campaign with a game against Oman on June 5 at Kensington Oval, Bridgetown in Barbados. Discussions are in progress over the look of their bowling attack but it looks very much certain that Hazlewood, Starc and Cummins will start.

Written By: Aditya Kukalyekar @adikukalyekar New Delhi Updated on: May 30, 2024 16:25 IST
T20 World Cup 2024
Image Source : GETTY Nathan Ellis

Former Australia captain Tim Paine has come up with an interesting suggestions for Mitchell Marsh and his men ahead of the T20 World Cup 2024. He has suggested Australia to pick Nathan Ellis as one of their pace bowlers in the playing XI instead of the usual trio - Josh Hazlewood, Mitchell Starc and Pat Cummins. These three pacers have more or less played in each of the last few World Cups irrespective of the format.

But Paine wants Ellis to be picked and one of Hazlewood or Cummins to feature in the XI during the World Cup. Ellis hasn't been a regular in Australia's T20I squad but has performed whenever he got a chance. The 29-year-old has played 14 T20Is and picked 24 wickets so far. He was a reserve player in Australia's title run in T20 World Cup 2021 and then wasn't picked for the mega event at home the very next year.

"I think Australia have a great opportunity, and I hope they take it in this World Cup, and that is to pick Nathan Ellis. He would be my third quick. I think he just complements the other guys really well, he's got a different skillset, comes from a different angle, different height, and think some variety in the attack will be really important to win this World Cup. I know you are going to ask me straightaway who aren't you playing…I'm going to go Mitchell Starc, [he] is my out and out number one quick, I'm picking him, obviously going with Adam Zampa, and I'm doing to decide between Josh Hazlewood and Pat Cummins," Paine said while speaking to ESPNCricinfo.

Interestingly, Starc won the Indian Premier League (IPL) last week with the Kolkata Knight Riders as he picked 17 wickets in the season including two player of the match performances in the Qualifier 1 and the final. Cummins was also amongst wickets while leading Sunrisers Hyderabad to the final while Josh Hazlewood is one of the best bowlers for Australia especially with the new ball. He delivered three maidens on the trot in the warm-up game against Namibia a couple of days ago.

But according to Paine, Ellis can just be the perfect foil to the bowling line-up that Australia currently possesses. "I'm going to pick one of them and I'm going to go with Nathan Ellis' all-round skills, his ability to bowl all through the powerplay, I think his slower balls, he's clever. His international record for the opportunities that he's been given is outstanding and I think now is the right time…that's not to say they [Cummins and Hazlewood] are not the best couple of bowlers in the country, they are outstanding bowlers, and will continue to be, I just think Nathan Ellis complements the rest of that attack really, really well," he further added.

Australia squad for T20 World Cup 2024: Mitchell Marsh (c), Ashton Agar, Pat Cummins, Tim David, Nathan Ellis, Cameron Green, Josh Hazlewood, Travis Head, Josh Inglis, Glenn Maxwell, Mitchell Starc, Marcus Stoinis, Matthew Wade, David Warner, Adam Zampa. Reserves - Jake Fraser-McGurk, Matt Short


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