`Injured` Starc ruled out of B’desh Tests, O’Keefe dropped

Melbourne: Australian fast bowler Mitchell Starc has been ruled out of the upcoming two-match Test series against Bangladesh due to an injury.

Confirming the news, Australia’s team physio David Beakley said that Starc underwent scans following their Champions Trophy campaign which revealed that his previous stress fracture is yet to heal fully.

“Mitchell was due to go for follow up scans after the Champions Trophy, as part of his recovery plan. These scans have indicated his previous stress fracture has still not fully healed to the extent we would like,” ESPNcricnfo quoted Beakley, as saying.

“He will now undertake a period of rest from bowling with the aim to have him return for the one-day series in India in late September as he begins his build up to the Ashes,” he added.

Meanwhile, left-arm spinner Steve O’Keefe has been left out of the squadthe 13-man squad for the upcoming series despite guiding his side to a victory with his 12-wicket haul against India in Pune earlier this year.

O’Keefe appeared in every match of Australia’s unsuccessful four-match series against India, but found himself in Cricket Australia’s bad books after he was fined and suspended by New South Wales for what were described as “highly inappropriate comments” at a Cricket NSW function.

Reflecting on his omission, national selector Trevor Hohns said O’Keefe was dropped because “he did not maintain this level in the remaining matches of the series”.

Ashton Agar has been picked as the second spinner alongside Nathan Lyon, while Usman Khawja has also been recalled after being axed for all four Tests in India.

Australia are slated to play a two-day tour game in Fatullah from August 22 before heading into the two Tests against Bangladesh from August 27 in Dhaka and September 4 in Chittagong.

In October 2015, Australia had postponed their Test tour to Bangladesh after receiving advice from the federal government that there were “high risks” if they went ahead with the tour, and Australia also did not send a team to the Under-19 World Cup in Bangladesh in early 2016.

Sean Carroll, Cricket Australia’s head of security, had visited Bangladesh in October to monitor security arrangements.

The Australia squad is as follows:

Steven Smith (captain), David Warner (vice-capt), Ashton Agar, Hilton Cartwright, Pat Cummins, Peter Handscomb, Josh Hazlewood, Usman Khawaja, Nathan Lyon, Glenn Maxwell, James Pattinson, Matt Renshaw, Matthew Wade (wk).(ANI)