‘We’ll miss Mitch, no doubt about that’, says George Bailey

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“Just looking at his form over the last six months, he’s been absolutely unbelievable for us”

Australia Twenty20 captain George Bailey has admitted that the baggy greens will miss left-arm pace bowler Mitchell Johnson during the World Twenty20 in Bangladesh.

Johnson was ruled out of the tournament after sustaining a toe infection following Australia’s tour of South Africa.

“We’ll miss Mitch, no doubt about that,” Bailey said. “Just looking at his form over the last six months, he’s been absolutely unbelievable for us. The last time he was in the subcontinent in the one-day series against India in October, he was really good there.

“But having said that, I think we’re really lucky to have that sort of back up. I think Doug’s in great touch. He has got some good Twenty20 form and pedigree behind himself and he has got good pace and swings the ball. These are the things which I think would be handy over here.”

Bailey also noted that he was pleased with the pace attack at his disposal.

“I’m really happy with the pace battery,” he said. “In the subcontinent conditions, it’s important to have really good pace, to have guys swing the ball. With the addition of Doug, I think in Mitchell Starc and Nathan Coulter-Nile, we’ve got three guys who bowl at a really good pace and swing the ball. That’s really important for us.

“I guess another important thing is you’ve got to finish it well at the end and all these guys have great skills at death (bowling).”

However, Bailey will be banking on his spinners to do most of the damage throughout the tournament since Bangladesh is renowned for its spin-friendly pitches.

“I think we got all bases covered,” Bailey said. “Brad Hogg… guess he’s been around for 30 years. James Muirhead is a really exciting leg-spinner for us. I love the option of having leg-spinners. I think they are match-winners and wicket-takers. They force batsmen to do something different.

“I think we’ve got a lot of part-time and back-up spinners. Glenn Maxwell has done a really good job for us in Twenty20 bowling. He’s probably no longer a part-time spinner [since he] plays a main role for us. Finch bowls a little bit of leg-spin, Cameron White bowls a little bit of leg-spin…we’ve got plenty of options there.”

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