Birmingham: An article appearing in the Sydney Morning Herald (SMH) has made a fresh case for including omitted left-arm fast bowler Mitchell Johnson in Australia`s Ashes squad for the series in England.
According to the paper, English supporters, including the Barmy Army, would have been delighted to get another chance to mock Johnson during his first outing at the ongoing Champions Trophy, but he has been the stand-out performer from a bowling perspective for the Kangaroos.
England`s players would be quite relieved to see the back of Johnson when the Test series starts on July 10, thoug they won`t admit to this fact.
Johnson has had some stinkers against England over the past two Ashes series.
Australia, according to the SMH article, can`t possibly win the Ashes against England playing cautiously, and leaving out Johnson, means going to war without a man opposition batsmen do fear.
The report further says that Johnson can help persuade the Australian selectors by destroying New Zealand and Sri Lanka in the remaining Champions Trophy matches.
Former Australian limited-overs fast bowler and BBC commentator Dirk Nannes believes Johnson is hitting the seam now, and therefore, needs to be around in case there is an opportunity for Test selection.
Though the chairman of selectors John Inverarity has stated that the Ashes squad could always be added to, vice-captain Brad Haddin said Australia has made their mind up about not doing any tinkering with the squad.
England may have beaten Australia in the first Champions Trophy, but Johnson bowled with good pace and control, beat the outside edge often and troubled the England batsmen with good short-pitched bowling.
England opener Ian Bell praised Johnson`s bowling, but avoided giving his opinion on whether Australia had made a mistake by omitting him from their Ashes squad.