Sydney, Cricket Australia has clarified that Mitchell Johnson will simply be serving the second year of a two-year deal signed under the old regime after the fast bowler was handed a national team contract for 2012/13, raising eyebrows across the country.
Johnson, who was dogged by poor form before breaking down with a foot injury during Australia”s tour of South Africa last November, retained his place in Cricket Australia”s list of contracted players for the next year.
He did not play the entire summer and it was widely believed the emergence of young guns Patrick Cummins, Mitchell Starc and James Pattinson – on top of the form of Peter Siddle, Ryan Harris and Ben Hilfenhaus – would bring an end to the left-armer”s international career.
With Cricket Australia slashing its contracts from 25 to 17 under the new deal, chief selector John Inverarity said the West Australian would still have picked up a new contract if his deal had expired.
“Look I think he would have, yeah. We have very high expectations that he will come back and come back extremely well. His record is very good,” Inverarity told AAP from England.
Johnson was one of seven fast bowlers named on the contract list.
Inverarity said he had kept a close eye on the 30-year-old, who worked with the selector”s old WA teammate Dennis Lillee in his comeback.