Victorian all-rounder Marcus Stoinis will make his international debut on Monday. Photo: Paul JeffersCardiff: Victorian all-rounder Marcus Stoinis will make his international debut on Monday when Australia begin their limited-overs series against England, in the teams’ one-off Twenty20 in Cardiff.
The 26-year-old’s selection was confirmed on Sunday by Steve Smith, who will be acting captain for the match because full-time Twenty20 captain Aaron Finch is still recovering from a foot injury. Shane Watson will open with David Warner in place of Finch.
Stoinis has not played in the Big Bash League since February 2014, having missed last season’s tournament due to injury. He was an unused member of Delhi’s squad in this year’s IPL.
“I played in the under-19 World Cup with Stoinis in Malaysia in 2008… and he’s certainly come a long way. He’s improved every year,” said Smith.
“He’s thrown up good performances first of all for WA, then moving over to Victoria it was a big move for him. He’s put the numbers on the board and thoroughly deserves an opportunity here tomorrow.”
Former captain George Bailey, spinner Ashton Agar, batsman Joe Burns and fast-bowler James Pattinson are the players to miss selection for the match.
Smith also confirmed Queensland leg-spinner Cameron Boyce, selected only in the Twenty20 squad, would play on Monday, in what will be his fifth match for Australia since making his debut late last year.
“There’s a T20 World Cup coming up… so we need these guys to play as much as they can. He performed really well for us in our one-off T20 we played in the UAE (against Pakistan) and I’m sure he’s looking forward to playing out here tomorrow,” Smith said.
“He’s got a lot of skill, got a lot of variation. It’s going to be a good test for him bowling out here, with the short, straight boundaries and the short boundary on one side. I’m really looking forward to seeing how he goes.”
Smith said the match would be an opportunity to build momentum, not just for the five-match one-day series against England, but also for next year’s World Twenty20 and the next two major one-day tournament in England, to be played in 2017 and 2019.
“It’s been disappointing for us obviously with the Ashes, not being able to retain them. It is a fresh start for us, a new (one-day) captain obviously. Hopefully I can take this team forward – and it starts here tomorrow in Cardiff,” he said.
“Playing in these conditions are really important for us. Obviously we’ve got the Champions Trophy here in 2017 and the World Cup in 2019, so every opportunity we get to play in these conditions we have to relish that, and try and improve as much as we can.”
ENGLAND (from): Eoin Morgan (c), Moeen Ali, Sam Billings, Jos Buttler, Steve Finn, Alex Hales, Jason Roy, Ben Stokes, Reece Topley, James Vince, David Willey, Chris Woakes.
AUSTRALIA: Shane Watson, David Warner, Steve Smith (c), Glenn Maxwell, Mitch Marsh, Marcus Stoinis, Matthew Wade, Nathan Coulter-Nile, Pat Cummins, Mitch Starc, Cameron Boyce.