KFC Big Bash League Franchise, the Melbourne Stars, have named the World Cup winning captain Michael Clarke as their new skipper for the 5the edition of the KFC Big Bash League.
Clarke takes over from Cameron White who has moved to the other Melbourne based franchise, Melbourne Renegades. When Clarke will be on test match duties, David Hussey will lead the side in his absence.
“I’ve been fortunate throughout my career to have success in the Test format and in the most recent one-day World Cup. There’s a goal I haven’t achieved yet and that’s trying to help a team win the BBL and I look forward over the challenge over the next couple of years trying to help the Melbourne Stars,” Clarke said.
Surprisingly, Clarke has not played even a single game in the KFC Big Bash in the past four editions due to his heavy international commitments.
“I’m really confident. We have a fantastic team and have done for a few years now. I’m hopeful I can help contribute and bring a title to the Melbourne Stars.”
With him now having retired from the ODI format of the game, Clarke feels he can focus more on T20.
“I think I showed most recently in the World Cup final that I can still play in this format. I’ve never had the opportunity to focus on the Twenty20 format. Now retiring from one-day cricket it’s the right time, it gives me the opportunity to really focus on Test cricket and T20 cricket,” said the new Melbourne Stars skipper.
Clarke was previously being tied with Sydney Thunder, but with Cameron White leaving, a spot for both a captain and a batsman opened up. Apart from Clarke, young spinner Adam Zampa and allrounder Evan Gulbis were also announced as additions to the Stars squad for BBL|05.
Clarke was very happy with both the editions and said, “Spin bowling has always been a thing I love facing as a batsman but I also love having in the team and in the squad and the Melbourne Stars have a good mixture of spin bowlers now.”
“Gulbis has had a lot of success as an allrounder. I really like the way he plays. He’s a power hitter, (can) bowl 140-145kph, so I think they’re two really good strike weapons for our squad, and on a big ground like this they’ll have a lot of success,” said Clarke about Evan Gulbis.