SYDNEY, Nov 6 (Reuters) - Australia paceman Mitchell Starc fired an ominous warning to England ahead of the Ashes series with a hat-trick for New South Wales on the second day of a Sheffield Shield match on Monday.
The quick, who will spearhead Australia’s attack when the series begins later this month, claimed the wickets of Jason Behrendorff, David Moody and Simon Mackin in successive deliveries to end Western Australia’s first innings.
Behrendorff and Mackin were bowled by trademark Starc yorkers in the four-day match at Hurstville Oval while Moody was adjudged lbw trying to defend another.
The left-armer finished with figures of 4-65, while Josh Hazlewood, who is likely open the bowling with Starc against England, did the damage at the top of the Western Australian order with 3-24.
Australia’s third frontline quick Pat Cummins took 2-31, while test off-spinner Nathan Lyon claimed a single wicket at the cost of 39 runs.
Shaun Marsh (2), Mitchell Marsh (0) and Hilton Cartwright (0), who are all hoping to fill the vacant number six spot in the Australian batting line-up, did themselves no favours as Western Australia fell for 176 in reply to the hosts’ 270.
The Ashes begin at the Gabba in Brisbane on Nov. 23 and Australia’s squad for the series is expected to announced after this round of Sheffield Shield matches in completed. (Reporting by Nick Mulvenney, editing by Peter Rutherford)