FAST TRACK? Former Test batsman Rob Quiney says Tymal Mills (pictured) could be the bolter for Perth.
FAST TRACK? Former Test batsman Rob Quiney says Tymal Mills (pictured) could be the bolter for Perth. Tony Marshall

Will tourists unleash secret pace weapon?

MITCHELL Johnson has terrorised and battered England into submission in the first two Tests, with the left-arm quick taking 17 wickets to put Australia just one win away from regaining the Ashes.

Being two down with three to play, the tourists will be desperate to stop the rot when the third Test starts in Perth today.

With desperate times calling for desperate measures, will England unleash its own version of Johnson, Tymal Mills, and hand the 21-year-old rookie left-arm paceman a shock debut?

England captain Alastair Cook rates Mills, a teammate of his at Essex and presently in Perth with the England Performance Programme, as the fastest bowler in England. The youngster has been clocked bowling at almost 150kmh.

To let him loose on a fast and bouncy WACA wicket would give the Aussies a taste of what Johnson has been dishing out.

But will England take the gamble on a young tearaway who has taken 32 wickets at 35.71 in his 18 first-class appearances?

Victorian opener and two-Test representative Rob Quiney told APN the thought of Mills playing in a four-man pace attack would not be as far out of left field as it sounded.

And he knows all about Mills' potential and the threat he posed - Quiney faced him in the nets during a short stint with Essex earlier this year.

"Tymal is very raw, but he's genuinely quick and has the ability to rough batsmen up. He can also swing the ball, which at his pace is real dangerous," Quiney said.

"There is no doubt he's an exciting prospect and he'd be licking his lips at the thought of bowling on the WACA.

"It would be a huge decision for them (England) to pick him, but it wouldn't be out of the question given the situation England is in."

Meanwhile, Aussie captain Michael Clarke played down talk Ryan Harris' troublesome knee would keep the Queensland quick out of his line-up.

Harris, 34, who has played in only six of Australia's 12 Tests this year, said he felt stiff following the Adelaide Test, but bowled at full pace in the nets yesterday.

Clarke, who will be playing his 100th Test, as will England captain Cook, said he was "confident" Harris would play.

"I'm hopeful that everyone will come up. "Ryano" (Harris) bowled so we're going to wait and see how he pulls up," Clarke said.

"We're going to wait until the toss (before naming the team) and it gives us another opportunity to have a look at the wicket as well."

Australian all-rounder James Faulkner, 12th man for the first two Tests, will not be considered after breaking his thumb in the nets yesterday.

Clarke said he expected England to recall paceman Tim Bresnan for his first Test of the series.

100 tests

HEAD TO HEAD

Michael Clarke v Alastair Cook

MICHAEL CLARKE

Age: 32

Test debut: v India at Bangalore in October 2004

Test runs: 7940 at 52.58

Test best: 329 not out v India at Sydney in January 2012

Centuries: 26. Fifties: 27

Ducks: 8.

Catches: 114

 

ALASTAIR COOK

Age: 28

Test debut: v India at Nagpur in March 2006

Test runs: 7883 at 47.20

Test best: 294 v India at Birmingham in August 2011

Centuries: 25. Fifties: 33

Ducks: 6.

Catches: 92


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