Australia head coach Andrew McDonald has strongly suggested that they won't go into the fourth Ashes Test without a spinner in their ranks. The former all-rounder believes a spinner gives more dimension to their bowling unit.
Off-spinner Todd Murphy, who replaced the injured Nathan Lyon, didn't have a massive role in the third Test at Headingley. While Murphy did dismiss Ben Stokes in the first innings, he also went for a few sixes.
Speaking during a media interaction, McDonald stated, as quoted by Perth Now:
"We like a spinner. We like to have a balanced attack and it gives you options, you can take pace out of the game and you become one dimensional ... without the ability to turn to a spinner. We'll have to assess that, but as it sits at the moment we do like to have the spinner in the team."
With the tourists failing to bowl England out in the fourth innings at Headingley, they will be keen to pick the right bowling attack for Old Trafford. Scott Boland is one of the likely bowlers to sit out after going wicketless at Headingley.
Andrew McDonald opens up on Australia's short-ball strategy to England's tailenders
With Australia's short-ball plans backfiring slightly against England's tailenders at Headingley, the 42-year-old suggested that the conditions played a part in their decision-making. McDonald added:
"If it works you say that it's right, and if it doesn't then you're probably on the opposite side. It's a combination, it's always somewhere in the middle of that. Day one, Mark Wood had ball speed and the ball was shifting, the overheads were pretty thick and you tend to pitch the ball up a lot more in those conditions. And when the sun comes out and the ball's not shifting as much, you've probably got less options on the fuller side."
The fourth Ashes Test starts on July 19 in Manchester.