Mitchell Starc has been granted a release from Australia’s tour of South Africa to be able to watch his wife Alyssa Healy in action in Sunday’s Women’s T20 World Cup Final.
Starc’s early exit from the tour will mean that he misses Australia’s ODI clash with the Proteas in Potchefstroom, and he is likely to be replaced by the likes of Josh Hazlewood, Jhye Richardson and Kane Richardson.
Australian coach Justin Langer revealed that the decision to allow Starc a release was something that had been in the works for a while.
“It is a once-in-a-lifetime chance for Mitch to watch Alyssa in a home World Cup Final and so we were happy to allow him to return home to support his wife and be part of a fantastic occasion,” he said in a Cricket Australia statement.
“It is something we have been talking about for a while and, given Mitch has had a considerable workload in all three formats this summer, his heading home a couple of days ahead of the rest of the squad means he will have a chance to refresh ahead of our home and away One-Day Internationals and Twenty20 Internationals against New Zealand that will wrap up our season.
“We have plenty of fast bowling options with us here in South Africa with Josh Hazlewood, Jhye Richardson and Kane Richardson all sitting out our previous match in Bloemfontein, and Mitch’s absence will offer one of them an opportunity to impress in Saturday’s match.”
Healy’s Australian side will take on India in the T20 World Cup Final after defeating South Africa in the semi-final on Thursday night.