Australia won the first ODI at Pallekelle against Sri Lanka on the back of heroics from their star all-rounder Glenn Maxwell. However, what can be called another blow to their injury-hit squad, batting all-rounder Marcus Stoinis has been ruled out for the rest of the series with a side strain. Spinner Ashton Agar is also ruled out after sustaining a similar injury in the opening ODI.
Especially, the Australian team was already without the services of Mitchell Marsh, Mitchell Starc, Kane Richardson, and Sean Abbott and now Stoinis and Agar join the wounded on the sidelines. Travis Head and Matthew Kuhnemann will be joining the ODI squad, who are currently representing Australia A in a four-day match in Hambantota. Amid the injury crisis, veteran pacer Pat Cummins spoke on the squad’s current depth and he believes there are still plenty of options available for the Men in Yellow. “All the planning was going to be for perfect preparation, we had the Aussie A team over here, a big squad, but there were always going to be things that crop up. It’s not ideal, the number of injuries, but we will strike that balance. Scott Boland has come in, hopefully, Stacy (Mitchell Starc) will be back soon, Mitch Marsh back bowling, Cam Green back bowling, It feels like we still have plenty of options,” Cummins said ahead of the second ODI.
Moreover, Stoinis contributed with a 31-ball 44 in the series opener, and Agar was one of the stars with the ball as he bagged two wickets in his ten overs, conceding 49 runs. Meanwhile, Cricket Australia also commented on the injury woes of the national side and has stated that they will be keeping a close eye on the squad featuring in the ODI series and will decide if any changes are necessary for the subsequent two-match Test series. “National selectors will continue to monitor the squad through the ODI series before deciding if any changes need to be made ahead of the two-Test matches in Galle,” Cricket Australia stated in an official statement.