Sydney: Australian cricketer Mitchell Starc is reportedly over the moon after getting the key wicket of star England batsman Kevin Pietersen, among his three-wicket haul, in the third day of the thirds Ashes Test at Old Trafford.
According to the Sydney Morning Herald, although England`s batting line-up had eluded Australian bowlers and threatened to kill off their Ashes revival at Old Trafford, however, Starc`s dismissal of Pietersen for 113 on Saturday has strengthened the tourists` hopes of victory at Manchester.
The report further said that Michael Clarke`s men are fancying their chances of coming back to 2-1 in the series by the end of the third Test, thanks to Starc, (3-75), who said that he was pleased and happy to get a big scalp, especially like Pietersen`s.
According to Starc, although Pietersen batted well to make his century, he made sure that that the controversial England player did not go ahead of that score, especially as Australia needed to take as many wickets as they could.
Starc further said that Australia`s weary fast bowlers would be prepared to `put in the overs` as quick as they can if England did not compile the 34 runs required to avoid the follow-on on Sunday, and Clarke sent them back in.
However, the report added that had Pietersen, who was apprehensive and then audacious, still had life in his 23rd Test century and fourth against Australia, Starc, who trapped the England star LBW in the final hour of the day, may not have managed to do that.
Snubbed at Lord`s, the report said that Starc can be a bit wayward at times but his trio of top-six wickets on Saturday, including that of England captain Alastair Cook for 62, was the latest evidence of his continuing prowess.
England finished Saturday on 7-294, trailing by 233 runs, with Australia churning diligently through their middle order with an indefatigable performance in the field, the report added.