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The Ashes: Australia bowler Mitchell Starc presses for recall in Derbyshire tour match


Australia bowler Mitchell Starc

Starc took 3-46 from 16 overs against Derbyshire
Tour match: Derbyshire v Australia, day one of three
Derbyshire172(Du Plooy 86, Neser 3-31, Starc 3-46)
Australia 77-0(Harris 52*)

Australia pace bowler Mitchell Starc pressed his claim to play in the fourth Ashes Test against England with three wickets in an over on the first day of a tour match against Derbyshire.

Starc’s 3-46, along with 3-31 from Michael Neser, helped Australia dismiss the home side for 172.

The tourists then moved to 77-0, with Marcus Harris unbeaten on 55 and Usman Khawaja on 18 not out.

Steve Smith, making his return from a concussion, is set to bat on Friday.

Smith missed Australia’s dramatic defeat in the third Test after being struck on the neck by England’s Jofra Archer during the second Test at Lord’s.

His only involvement on Thursday was to bowl one over with his leg-spin, with plenty of his team-mates getting valuable match practice.

In the early stages it looked like Neser could overshadow Starc by taking the first three wickets to fall, including two in two balls.

As Australia were held up by Leus du Plooy’s 86, left-armer Starc cut a frustrated figure, his bowling wayward.

That changed as soon as Matt Critchley gloved a short ball behind to wicketkeeper Alex Carey. From the next ball, Alfie Gleadall was bowled by a devastating yorker, with Tony Palladino suffering the same fate four deliveries later.

When Australia came to bat, Harris and Khawaja made comfortable progress on a sedate pitch against some gentle bowling.

The conditions look ideal for Smith to spend a long time at the crease.

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