Australia all-rounder Marcus Stoinis has been ruled out of the 2019 ICC World Cup clash against Pakistan on Wednesday with a side strain and is a doubt for the rest of the tournament.
Stoinis picked up the injury while bowling his fifth over in Australia’s 36-run defeat to India but did go on bowl a further two overs at the death. The all-rounder’s injury is now set to be assessed once again before Sunday’s clash against Sri Lanka following which a final decision is expected to be made by the Australian team management.
Meanwhile, all-rounder Mitchell Marsh has been flown in as cover for Stoinis as a precautionary move.
“Not exactly sure on how many games he’ll (Stoinis) miss,” Australia skipper Aaron Finch said on the eve of the Pakistan clash.
“That’s why Mitch is flying over. It’s still being assessed. And over the next couple of days we’ll have a clearer picture of what that looks like. Mitch was meant to fly over with the Australia A side on Friday.
“He’s just coming a couple of days early as a bit of precaution, if Stoinis doesn’t recover quick enough or doesn’t respond to treatment well enough over the next few days.”
The Aussies will now take a call on whether to play an extra batsman or bowler to replace Stoinis for the clash against Pakistan at Taunton on Wednesday.
“We’re going to have to juggle around especially that allrounder spot,” Finch said.
“We’ve got to find a few more overs now, whether we play the extra batter or extra bowler, we’ll wait and see, and especially tomorrow with the conditions.”
Sri Lanka captain Dimuth Karunaratne said his side were happy to share the points with Bangladesh but would rather have taken to the field after persistent heavy rain forced their World Cup group phase match to be abandoned without a ball being bowled at Bristol on Tuesday.
Both teams take a point each – Sri Lanka now have four from four games points, while Bangladesh have three points from four matches.
“Sometimes you might think if you share the points, it’s fine, but I think we don’t want to win our points freely. We want to play competitive cricket and win games and gain the points,” Karunaratne said.
Bangladesh coach Steve Rhodes bemoaned the lack of reserve days at the World Cup after a tournament-record third abandonment in the space of five days.
The inclement weather in England and Wales is starting to become a major talking point after Bangladesh-Sri Lanka became the latest fixture to be rained off.
With rain continuing to fall at Bristol, a decision was taken to abandon the game without a ball being bowled shortly before 2pm – three-and-a-half hours after play was scheduled to begin – meaning both sides each took a point.
Rhodes said: “We really targeted this sort of game to get two points, and I know that Sri Lanka would have fought very hard and been no pushovers at all.
“But we do see it as one point lost and that’s disappointing. But realistically, what can we do about it? Absolutely nothing. It’s out of our control, the way the weather is.
“If you know the English weather, sadly, we’re going to get a lot of rain. We never know when the rain’s going to come. At the moment, we’re seeing some problems.
“I know logistically, it would have been a big headache for the tournament organisers, and I know that it would have been difficult, but we have got quite a lot of time in between games, and if we have got to travel a day later, then so be it.
“We put men on the moon so why can’t we have a reserve day, when actually this tournament is a long tournament?”
Rhodes was more upbeat on the prognosis of talismanic all-rounder Shakib Al Hasan, who was a doubt heading into this clash because of a thigh injury he sustained against England at the weekend.
Rhodes added: “We’re very, very optimistic about the treatment that he’ll get this week and the way that he can recover well; we’re very optimistic that he can play in that next game against West Indies.”