Melbourne Stars call up teenage spinner Liam Bowe

Boy wonder: Liam Bowe (dark green on left) Photo: Getty Images/Cricket Australia
Boy wonder: Liam Bowe (dark green on left) Photo: Getty Images/Cricket Australia

He's the bespectacled teenage wonder affectionately known as "Wizard" due to his resemblance to Harry Potter, and Liam Bowe could be set for a spell under lights.

Left-arm spinner Bowe, 19, has been signed by the Melbourne Stars as a replacement for departing all-rounder Glenn Maxwell, meaning the Bendigo product must either play or be 12th man when the Stars face the Adelaide Strikers at the MCG on Tuesday night.

With the Stars having lost Maxwell, leg-spinner Adam Zampa and all-rounder James Faulkner to Australian one-day international duties, they have added four players to their squad for the match against the Strikers.  They  have also acquired former Melbourne Renegades quick Cameron Gannon, who, like Bowe, must either play or be 12th man in accordance with tournament rules.

Emerging batsman Seb Gotch has also been included along with Peter Handscomb, who is set to make his first appearance of the Big Bash League season after an outstanding start to his Test career.

While technically the replacement for Maxwell, Bowe would in effect replace Zampa if he were to play and join fellow-spinner Michael Beer. Bowe has taken 18 wickets for Essendon in Premier Cricket this season, and impressed while playing for the Stars in pre-season practice matches in Wellington and Albury.

The Stars squared their ledger on Saturday night by beating  the Renegades at Etihad Stadium, leaving them at 2-2 with four matches to play before the finals. Coach Stephen Fleming's side will be looking to continue their trend of recent seasons in which they have overcome sluggish starts to their campaign to make the top four.

The Strikers (2-3) have added New Zealand international leg-spinner Ish Sodhi to their squad having lost England all-rounder Chris Jordan with a hamstring injury. They will also be without batsman Travis Head and fast bowler Billy Stanlake, both of whom were named on Saturday in Australia's squad for the  ODI series against Pakistan. To fill the breach, the Strikers have called up Tim Ludeman and Wes Agar. The Strikers are also hopeful fast bowler Kane Richardson will be ready to return from a back injury in next Monday's game against the Renegades.

The Stars' women are also in action at the MCG on Tuesday afternoon, desperately seeking to arrest a four-match  losing streak when they face the Strikers. The hosts have made one change to their squad, including fast bowler Hayleigh Brennan at the expense of Lily Bardsley.

This story Melbourne Stars call up teenage spinner Liam Bowe first appeared on The Sydney Morning Herald.