Marcus Stoinis has set his sights on bowling again in the Twenty20 internationals against Sri Lanka after going the entire BBL without ball in hand.
Stoinis’ calendar was among those most impacted by the New Zealand white-ball series being postponed, as he remains locked out of Western Australia for another fortnight.
The allrounder is likely to remain in Melbourne with his Big Bash League duties for the Stars over, with an eye to get his bowling back on track before the internationals.
Stoinis has not bowled since the early group stages of the T20 World Cup, when he hurt his side in an injury that also impacted the start of the BBL.
His push to return to the bowling crease was then helped by contracting COVID-19, leaving him off training and in isolation in a hotel room for a week.
Australia face Sri Lanka in five T20s in February, which will mark the beginning of the team’s preparations for the home World Cup defence in October and November.
And Stoinis has made clear he expects to be bowling in those games, after starring with the bat in his last BBL appearance of the summer with 75no.
“I’ll start bowling again (before those games), so that will be on the agenda (in Melbourne),” he said.
“I would love to have been more active over this last little bit, but it’s been hard. We haven’t had access to much and limited training.”
Stoinis admitted he had mixed feelings about the New Zealand series’ postponement, after a busy schedule of cricket since the restart of last year’s IPL.
New Zealand were forced to abandon their plans to travel to Australia, after they were yet to lock in spots for a 10-day mandatory hotel quarantine period on return.
It is unclear when the matches will be made up, while a T20 tour of New Zealand by Australia in March now looks increasingly unlikely.
“That’s bittersweet (having the home series postponed),” Stoinis said.
“If you asked me two weeks ago and I was pretty tired after sitting in a hotel room and hadn’t been home since August, I might have given a different answer.
“But now coming out of it and you feel better and fresh and back to normal life, you realise you want to keep playing cricket. It is disappointing.”