From backyard dream, Johnson set for home Australia appearance

Australia will unleash tearaway left-arm quick Spencer Johnson for his debut international on home soil in Sunday’s T20 game against the West Indies.

Johnson, 28, has played three times for Australia – two T20Is in South Africa last August and a 50-over fixture in India last September. She has been summoned for his first home international as Australia, after an 11-run win over the West Indies in Hobart on Friday night, take a 1-0 lead into Sunday night’s Adelaide Oval encounter.

“It’s exciting,” Johnson told reporters on Saturday. “To get another opportunity is obviously something where I want to be. “When I played last year in September, I think I’m a different player now, I have a bit more success in the Big Bash so I’m definitely ready to go.”

Johnson was the hero of Brisbane Heat’s BBL final triumph, taking 4 for 26, the culmination of a whirlwind period.

In September 2022, Johnson had no professional contract and was working as a gardener. But a breakout BBL season was followed by a first-class debut for South Australia and a stint in the UK Hundred competition. In this year’s IPL auction he was signed by Gujurat Titans for a whopping $A1.78 million.

“I’m taking it in my stride –  when you sit back and think about it, it’s pretty ridiculous,” he said. “But I’m here now and I just keep going.”

The Adelaide-born fast bowler was particularly rapt at the prospect of making his international debut in Australia in his home city.

“It’s obviously going to be a proud moment for my family, to have them in the crowd, and friends there as well,” he said “To play for Australia is something that you dream about in the backyard so to do it is going to be quite cool.”

Australia’s T20 side have five more games before the World Cup starting in June in the West Indies.

“It would be nice to have a couple of performances here for Australia now but the World Cup is still a long way away,” he said. “If I have a good IPL there’s every chance I might be in that World Cup squad.”

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