Starc warms up for series with top show

Too good ... Mitchell Starc appeals for the wicket of Callum Ferguson during the Matador Cup final at North Sydney Oval. Photo: Ryan Pierse/Getty Images.
Too good ... Mitchell Starc appeals for the wicket of Callum Ferguson during the Matador Cup final at North Sydney Oval. Photo: Ryan Pierse/Getty Images.

NEW Zealand's batsmen have been given a stark reminder of what awaits them in the Test series against Australia.

Mitchell Starc warmed up for the first Test at Gabba, starting next week, by leading New South Wales to a 10th domestic one-day title, and first in 10 years.

The left-arm quick claimed 3-39 to help the Blues to an easy nine-wicket win in the Matador Cup final against South Australia at North Sydney Oval.

Named man of the series, Starc finished the tournament with a series-record 26 wickets (17 of them bowled) from six games - surpassing the 24 taken by Victorian Shane Harwood in 2008-09.

Arguably the world's best limited-overs bowler, Starc has only played two Tests on home soil since January 2013 - in Brisbane and Sydney last summer against India - and will be keen to stamp his authority on the long form of the game against the visiting Kiwis, who he destroyed at this year's World Cup.

At-times unplayable in the final, Starc (pictured) wrecked the stumps of Redbacks opener Travis Head (1) and tailenders Joe Mennie (9) and Kane Richardson (1).

South Australia was reeling at 2/12, before a third-wicket stand between Callum Ferguson (61) and Tom Cooper (105) steadied the ship. It then lost 7-30 to be all out for 221. Man of the match Josh Hazlewood matched Starc's effort with 3-28.

Nic Maddinson then set the tone in the chase (44 runs of 26 balls), before fellow opener Ed Cowan (88 from 78) and skipper Steve Smith (84 from 72, including six sixes) finished it off.



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