Mitchell Johnson last played a month ago. A physically and emotionally draining summer had taken a toll. What started as a break for a sore hamstring, turned into an extended break from cricket. Over the last week, Johnson hit the nets with a vengeance. He trained when his team played a match, and even when they rested. The ferocity in his bowling was back again.
A couple of days before Australia's SCG game, Johnson bowled to George Bailey at the nets. It was his first spell in a while where he went full tilt. It was brief and did not cause much concern to his captain. "He was fast. It felt like four hours, but I think I faced him for half an hour," Bailey had said.
The injury was a thing of the past and the mental freshness was back. But Australia kept him away from the tri-series, until the final.
At the Waca, the pacer will be free to choose his prey. With the slingy action, his thunderbolts could instil fear in the mind of the English batsmen on Sunday.
More so, it could be a prelude to what batsmen can expect from him in the World Cup.On Saturday morning, Johnson had his teammates running for cover with a lethal spell. It wasn't a competitive game but the signs were ominous. "It is good to have Mitchell back. It will be nice to actually see him unleash on the opposition rather than us being cannon fodder for the last couple of days, which has been a bit nasty," said Bailey.