Australia Nets Session
Australia Nets Session

Stoinis takes positive step in keeping WC dream alive

Mitch Marsh has been released back to play for Australia A with Marcus Stoinis fit to see out the World Cup after overcoming a side strain.

Stoinis passed a number of fitness tests on Tuesday, getting through just under an hour of bowling at training before being assessed by coach Justin Langer.

The West Australian allrounder is considered a strong chance to take on Bangladesh on Thursday, after getting through the session without concern.

Marsh had only last week been called into Australia's World Cup camp as cover, with fears Stoinis wouldn't be fit to bowl again and would need to be withdrawn.

Stoinis was injured in last Sunday's loss to India, with Australia having been forced to play without a bowling allrounder since.

Captain Aaron Finch admitted last Friday that had changed the balance of the side, but his team still responded with two wins over Pakistan and Sri Lanka. A point Langer said proved that Australia could adapt to any situation thrown at them.

"We've played really well with another balance," Langer said.

"We played in India and Dubai (earlier in 2019) with two spinners. I'm really confident with whatever balance we go in. It's actually really exciting.

"We said at the start of the tour that we've got lots of options, very adaptable and that's our strength not our weakness.

"I get the sense some people think that's our weakness.

"I actually think it's our strength that we can play according to our opposition, we can play accordingly to grounds, we can play accordingly to managing players."

Australia's adaptability could extend to the side changing again throughout the tournament.

Adam Zampa is expected to reclaim his spot with Stoinis' return, lessening the need to play four frontline quicks.

But with Nathan Lyon the only man not to play a game, Langer predicted Australia could well opt with two spinners the further in the competition gets.

"It's been pace that's dominated the tournament," Langer said.

"Over the last few years it's been spin that's dominated one-day cricket.

"That might change - it's been wet, it's been overcast, the wickets get a bit drier. This one (pitch) looks dry. That's been the trend so far and it's worked really well.

"It might change when we get to Old Trafford (in the last game against South Africa) for example.

"We might look at playing two spinners if it's a dry wicket. It's good to have those options."

Langer meanwhile was coy on what affect Stoinis' likely return could having on the batting line up, not being drawn into who could find their way out of the side.

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