Published On: Mon, Jun 4th, 2018

Kane Richardson ready to embrace unexpected senior position

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A tally of 15 ODIs over five years is hardly an overload of international experience, but it is enough to put Kane Richardson in an unexpected position: the senior figure in Australia’s pace attack for the one-day series against England.

Much focus has been, and will remain on, the absence of Steven Smith and David Warner. However, without their big three of Mitchell Starc, Pat Cummins and Josh Hazlewood because of a variety of injuries, Australia have arrived with a group of pace bowlers – Richardson, Andrew Tye, Jhye Richardson, Billy Stanlake, Marcus Stoinis and the uncapped Michael Neser – who have just 35 ODI appearances between them. They will be supplemented by Nathan Lyon (13 ODIs) and Ashton Agar (4 ODIs)

They face the daunting prospect of taking on the power-packed batting line-up of the No. 1 ODI side in the world – who beat them 4-1 in Australia earlier this year – and though the combination of quicks that will line up at The Oval remains uncertain, Kane Richardson is ready for a leadership role in what could yet shape as a battle for one or places in the final World Cup squad

“That’s a first, and probably a last I think,” he said of his senior status. “I’ve been around long enough but been in and out. I take it as [showing] a bit of leadership towards our young buys in Billy and Jhye. But Nathan Lyon is on this tour and he’s pretty senior in terms of the pecking order in Test cricket so we are a pretty big group.”

“Being in the county of where the World Cup will be helps, but obviously those three guys will be back at some stage so it’s all about doing as much as you can when you get the opportunity.”

As Richardson noted, his one-day career has been a stop-start affair. His debut came against Sri Lanka in 2013 and his most recent outings were against India last year when he claimed seven wickets in three matches. He has not previously been around the one-day side long enough to even get on the fast bowlers’ WhatsApp group

“Apparently there used to be a WhatsApp group but I’ve never been involved in it, so maybe I wasn’t worthy of being added,” he joked, without confirming whether he would be creating a new one.

Yet, while Australia’s collection of quicks have precious little experience in ODIs to call on, Richardson believes their success in the T20 side can hold them in good stead. Richardson, Stanlake and Tye played a key part in Australia securing the triangular series against England and New Zealand earlier this year.

“Billy [Stanlake] did such a good job in that tri-series and that was one of things I thought about on the plane over, that it’s actually quite a similar team that beat England and New Zealand, so even though we are inexperienced we’ve done pretty well as an attack before.

“It helped having some fresh guys come in after that one-day series, so you take confidence when you do well. Billy would have taken so much out of that. AJ [Tye] is quite an experienced bowler, so there’s some guys who are full of confidence.”

Australia prepare for the one-day series with warm-up matches against Sussex and Middlesex before the opening match against England, at The Oval, on June 13.



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