It would be fair to say everyone has said something over the years they have regretted later. Mitchell Starc had his yesterday.
When asked about Shane Warne’s possible return to Test cricket at 43, Starc said – “He’s done his time. He’s obviously done a lot of great things for Australian cricket, but he’s done and dusted now.”
Done and dusted?
A little respect goes a long way. That comment shows none.
Don’t tell me Starc is part of the new breed that lives in the moment and takes little notice of what the game is all about, it’s traditions, and it’s heroes.
Shane Warne is an undisputed hero, it would be stretching a long bow to even contemplate Starc would be anywhere near on the same planet compared to Warne, the greatest leggie to ever turn his wrist over, capturing 708 Tests wickets, second only to great rival Murali with 800, at 22.72.
Starc has just finished his first Test against South Africa with a career-best 6-154 in the second dig, and 8-209 for the match, averaging 26.12.
The six for was flattering, a tardy mixture of 65% rubbish, 30% a possible dot ball, and 5% a potential wicket-taker.
Starc’s economy rate for the Test was 4.66. Warne’s economy rate over 145 Tests is 2.65.
Starc will never draw big crowds to any game on his own, Warne fills stands and would do so again if there is a way for him to play in back to back Ashes series next year with 10 Tests.
As Murali said yesterday – “If he wished would walk into the (Test) side”.
And he would, except for the attitude of first of all Victoria demanding he play club cricket and earn his spot for the state, and Cricket Australia demanding he plays Sheffield Shield for the same reason.
It’s a replay of last night’s “Howzat”, the documentary of how Kerry Packer waged his war against the establishment to start World Series Cricket in 1977 that saved the grand old game from going down the toilet.
The current administrators haven’t learned anything from that war.
There’s still no vision, nor lateral thinking. Just stick to the ground rules come what may.
With the exception of accumulating vast hordes of money, flogging the players physically and mentally in three formats in a 12 months of the year grab.
That being the case, you would think the establishment would leap at the chance to have Shane Warne, a built-in commercial cash flow, on duty whenever they can.
And don’t think for one minute Warne wouldn’t be competitive at Test level, or wouldn’t be able to hold his place.
He would romp it in.
This major talking point isn’t finished yet. It has more legs that appears on the surface.
No Mitchell Starc, Shane Warne’s international career isn’t done and dusted.