Mitchell Starc rips Aussie cricket teammates over 'terrible' scenes in win at T20 World Cup

It comes after the Aussies were embroiled in a controversy with England.

Mitchell Starc has hit out at Australia's "terrible" fielding display against Scotland at the T20 Cricket World Cup, despite a narrow win that saw them finish unbeaten at the top of Group B. The Aussies had already qualified for the next phase of the World Cup but a Scotland win would have seen them knock holders England out of the tournament. The Scots came close but the Aussies sealed a nervy five-wicket win with two balls to spare.

The match was embroiled in controversy after Aussie quick Josh Hazlewood joked before the match that it would be in their best interests to allow Scotland to get a result that would knock England out. But Starc said Australia never considered going easy against the Scots, despite an uncharacteristically poor display in the field from his side.

Mitchell Starc said Australia's fielding against Scotland at the T20 Cricket World Cup was terrible after they dropped six catches. Pic: Getty
Mitchell Starc said Australia's fielding against Scotland at the T20 Cricket World Cup was terrible after they dropped six catches. Pic: Getty

With Pat Cummins rested and Marcus Stoinis not bowling, Starc admitted Australia's fielding was not up to standard as they dropped six catches and looked at risk of a first T20 loss to an associate nation. Brandon McMullen whacked 60 from 34 balls for the Scots, clubbing six sixes and regularly belting the Aussie bowling attack through long off. Adam Zampa eventually got his wicket when he beat the right-hander in flight and had him well caught at short third-man by Starc, slowing Scotland's momentum.

Glenn Maxwell claimed 2-44 but copped some treatment off George Munsey (35 off 23) before out-foxing the Scotland opener in another crucial moment. But in truth, Scotland's 5-180 was a far better total than the Aussies should have allowed, with the team's normally exemplary displays in the field not up to scratch.

"We were just terrible. It was about trying different options for us, but still trying to be very competitive with the ball and with bat," Starc said after the game. "We were certainly off the mark in the field with dropped catches and probably some other areas that were a bit sloppy as well. (It’s) good to get that stuff out of the way, and now we’re into the pointy end.”

Starc said even though Australia's Super 8 spot was already assured no matter what the result was against Scotland, there was no way the Aussies were ever go to approach the game any differently and try to get England eliminated. "A throw-away line has been blown way out of proportion," Starc said after the win. "You don't stuff around with Mother Cricket and try to worry about other results. We're here to win games. It's international cricket. England are now on the other side of the draw, so it really doesn't make that much difference for the next three games."

Travis Head and Marcus Stoinis were the saviours for Australia with the bat after both belting half-centuries and combining for an 80-run stand that changed the match. Tim David and Matt Wade took the game to the death, before Chris Sole dropped David with three balls left in a crucial moment that sealed Scotland's fate and ensured the Aussies remained unbeaten.

England must have had some nervous moments watching on as Australia struggled at 1-36 after six overs for their slowest powerplay of the competition. Mitch Marsh's men then needed 107 runs from the final 10 overs but the partnership from Head (68 from 49 balls) and Stoinis (59 off 29) turned the match on its head.

Seen here, Travis Head batting for Australia against Scotland at the T20 Cricket World Cup.
Travis Head top-scored for Australia against Scotland at the T20 Cricket World Cup. Pic: Getty

Stoinis smashed 18 off one over from Safyaan Sharif when he switch-hit him for six, then cleared the rope down the field on the next ball. With 60 needed from the final five overs, Head hit Sharif for three straight sixes before being caught down the ground a few balls later. The damage was done by that stage though as the Aussies did just enough to scrape home for the win.

"I was just trying to keep (Head) batting, and then he picked his bowler and turned the game in that over with those three sixes," Stoinis said. "There is no substitute for confidence. That is the recipe we are all trying to keep hold of - to be confident for as long as we can." Australia will now face India, Afghanistan and Bangladesh in their Super Eight group, unless Nepal upset Bangladesh.

with AAP