Qantas Tour of England - ODIs
Injured Stanlake returns home from IPL
Paceman may require surgery on fractured finger ahead of tour of the UK in June
25 April 2018, 09:39 AM AEST
Australia are confident paceman Billy Stanlake will be fit for the Qantas Tour of England in June, even if he requires surgery on his fractured finger.
Stanlake has been ruled out of the remainder of the Indian Premier League after he fractured the pinky finger on his right hand in the Sunrisers Hyderabad's match against Chennai last Sunday.
The 23-year-old will consult with a surgeon when he returns to Australia.
The length of his stint on the sidelines won't be determined until after he meets with the surgeon, but medical staff are hopeful he will be fit for the UK tour even if an operation is required.
With pace spearheads Mitchell Starc and Pat Cummins both currently nursing injuries, Stanlake looms as a key figure for the six limited-overs matches against England, Australia's first series since the ball-tampering scandal in South Africa last month.
The injury-plagued quick played two one-day internationals in 2017 and performed strongly in Australia's T20 tri-series triumph in February.
He had been in good form for the Sunrisers as well, taking five wickets and hitting the winning runs in their victory over Mumbai.
He was one of seven fast bowlers named on Australia's central contract list earlier this month and one of four uncapped at Test level alongside Jhye Richardson, Kane Richardson and Andrew Tye.
The tall right-armer has played just two first-class games since his debut in 2015 due to serious back problems. He also suffered a bad infection in his big toe at the start of the 2017-18 season, with the quick revealing that amputation had been discussed if the infection had continued to spread.
Despite his injury troubles, his emergence in the 20-over format internationally has led former Australia captain Ricky Ponting, who worked with Stanlake as an assistant coach earlier this year, to declare the Queenslander could become one of the best fast bowlers in the world.
"I just love the look of what he's got," Ponting told cricket.com.au in February. "He's almost seven feet tall, bowls close to 150 kilometres an hour, he can swing the new ball.
"He's got a little nasty streak in him as well – he likes bowling bouncers.
"When we see him get a bit more of a tank and grow into his body a bit more and put on a little bit of weight, I think he's someone that could be one of the all-time great fast bowlers.
"That's all there ahead of him, we just hope he stays in one piece and becomes the kind of cricketer we all think he can be."
Australia are set to announce their squad for the UK tour next month, including their new one-day skipper who will take over from the banned Steve Smith.
The first of five ODIs against England is at The Oval on June 13 before a one-off T20 at Edgbaston on June 27.
Qantas ODI Tour of England
June 7 Warm-up v Sussex, Hove (D/N)
June 9 Warm-up v Middlesex, Lord's
June 13 First ODI, The Oval (D/N)
June 16 Second ODI, Cardiff
June 19 Third ODI, Trent Bridge (D/N)
June 21 Fourth ODI, Durham (D/N)
June 24 Fifth ODI, Old Trafford
June 27 Only T20, Edgbaston (D/N)