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Stoinis' injury a big blow for Australia

A thumb injury has prevented allrounder Marcus Stoinis from playing in Australia's fourth ODI against India at Chandigarh.

Stoinis' injury a big blow for Australia

A thumb injury has prevented allrounder Marcus Stoinis from playing in Australia's fourth ODI against India at Chandigarh.

MARCUS STOINIS of Australia bats during the One Day International match between Australia and England at Perth Stadium in Perth, Australia.
MARCUS STOINIS of Australia bats during the One Day International match between Australia and England at Perth Stadium in Perth, Australia. Picture:Photo by Mark Nolan/Getty Images

Marcus Stoinis' importance to Australia's World Cup hopes has been laid bare by an untimely thumb injury, forcing the allrounder to miss the fourth ODI against India in Chandigarh.

Stoinis, having overtaken Mitch Marsh as Australia's premier allrounder in all three formats and been heralded as the opposition's biggest threat by Virat Kohli at the start of the tour, was a high-profile omission from the XI after helping defeat the hosts by 32 runs in the third ODI.


The 29-year-old suffered his setback in the field in Ranchi.

The fact Stoinis continued to field in that match, remained with the squad and was in good spirits at the Punjab Cricket Association Stadium on Sunday suggests the injury is not serious.

However, the damage to Australia's team balance caused by omitting their reigning ODI player of the year was plain to see.

Stoinis top-scored with 52 in the second ODI, almost dragging his side to victory in the final-over thriller, while his medium-pacers will also be missed on what Kohli termed a belter of a pitch.

"To have someone as flexible as that is a great asset to any team, because then you can build a team around them and they can almost fill any hole you need," Aaron Finch said of Stoinis at the start of this tour.

"It provides so much of a chop out for other guys.

"We've seen that with India, when Hardik Pandya is fit it makes the balance of the team so much better. Same with Ben Stokes for England."

Ashton Turner, who made his debut in the first ODI, replaced Stoinis and is a handy offspinner but currently unable to bowl because of a shoulder injury.

The issue of managing Stoinis, one of the few Australians taking part in this year's Indian Premier League, was already a challenge for Australia.

Stoinis is set to travel to Dubai on Thursday with Australia's ODI squad for a five-match ODI series against Pakistan. The West Australian will then return to India after the fifth ODI to link up with Kohli's IPL team, Royal Challengers Bangalore.

Stoinis will play in the IPL until he is summoned to Brisbane for Australia's World Cup training camp, then fly directly to England.

If Stoinis is picked in both the World Cup and Ashes squad, as is currently expected, he won't be home until September.

"It's a long time away from home ... there's a long journey ahead, (it's important) not to get too caught up in every moment that happens," he said.

AAP


AAP




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