The Ashes 2017 is around the corner and things are not looking too good for England. While the Ben Stokes controversy seemed to take the focus away from on-field matters for the English, injuries to Steven Finn and Moeen Ali have further hampered their preparations. And to add to their woes, Australian players seem really charged up for the series. Ahead of the Ashes, Mitchell Starc sent England's batsmen a massive warning with a hat-trick for New South Wales in a Sheffield Shield match in Sydney on Monday.
Australia's fast bowling spearhead was in top form as he demolished Western Australia's tail to finish the innings with four for 56 from 20 overs.
Starc first clean bowled Jason Behrendorf, then trapped David Moody leg before wicket before scattering the stumps of Simon Mackin with consecutive deliveries.
Starc had registered a career-best haul of eight for 73 against South Australia at Adelaide Oval late last month.
It capped an impressive domestic match for Australia's two Test strike bowlers -- Starc and Josh Hazlewood.
Hazlewood took three for 13 on the way to figures of three for 24 in Western Australia's first innings of 176.
Starc and Hazlewood are expected to share the new ball in the opening Test of the Ashes series against England in Brisbane, starting on November 23.
England's two best batsmen -- Alastair Cook and Joe Root -- had failed in the visitors' opening tour match against a Western Australia XI. Cook was sent packing for a duck on the second ball of the match by Nathan Coulter-Nile, while Root managed just 9 before falling prey to Aaron Hardie.
(With AFP Inputs)