Starc set to face Sri Lanka after 'nervous moments' following blow on knee
Left-arm quick was struck in the nets two days before Sri Lanka game, but trained on match eve
Mitchell Starc is set to take his place in Australia's line-up against Sri Lanka after overcoming a fierce blow on the knee from a Mitchell Marsh shot during training although coach Justin Langer admitted the team "were really worried" for a short time.
Starc was struck on the right knee by a straight drive in his follow-through during Australia's Tuesday night training session at the ICC Academy. He left the session with a heavy limp and in some discomfort, but was moving without assistance.
Starc trained fully on Wednesday with a compression bandage on his knee but did bat and bowl during the session with medical staff continuing to monitor his bruising but Langer was upbeat.
"He'll be playing, don't worry about that. We had a couple of nervous moments. In the nets Mitch Marsh smacked one back at him and hit him straight in the right knee," he told Fox Cricket. "We were really worried about it, but he is that tough. He is an elite athlete and he's bloody tough. He came out, trained yesterday and he'll be up and running."
Australia have two matches in three days, as they face Sri Lanka on Thursday and England on Saturday, and management of their fast bowling stocks will be critical.
Starc, Josh Hazlewood and Pat Cummins all played in Australia's opening win against South Africa in Abu Dhabi as part of an attack with only four specialist bowlers. It was the first time all three had played a T20I together, having played six times together in T20s for Sydney Sixers in 2012, with the Sixers winning all six games.
Kane Richardson and Ashton Agar were left out of the win over South Africa and Langer said the decision was very tough. The coach stressed Australia would be flexible throughout the tournament with their selections, depending on conditions and match-ups.
Alex Malcolm is an Associate Editor at ESPNcricinfo