Bangalore: Mike Hussey, the veteran Australian batsman, has said the chance to regain the No. 1 Test ranking will drive Australia during their Test series against South Africa.
South Africa replaced England to become the No. 1-ranked Test team with a 2-0 victory in England in August this year. Ahead of the three-Test series against South Africa beginning in Brisbane on November 9, Hussey said to wrest the No. 1 ranking back was a huge motivation and the team was working towards trying to get back to the top of the standings.
“We’re going to have to play some outstanding cricket, we’re going to have to be at our best for the whole Test series but I’m confident we can do it,” Hussey told the Cricket Australia website. “We have a nice blend of youth and experience in our team and we’ve got a lot of hunger to make sure we get back to the number one team in the world.”
Australia, currently ranked third in the Test charts, will shoot to the No.1 spot if they win the series, but will have to contend with South Africa’s pace attack, which includes the likes of Dale Steyn and Morne Morkel.
“They’re pretty good, there’s no coincidence they are the number one team in the world with the attack they’ve got,” said Hussey.
“They complement each other really well, they are all very different bowlers,” Hussey said referring to Steyn, Morkel and Vernon Philander. “They generally play in conditions that sort of suit them as well but they’ve been able to adapt to different conditions around the world like playing in the subcontinent. I’m expecting them to adapt pretty well to Australian conditions and give us a really good challenge.”
Hussey expected the customary pace and bounce at Gabba for the first Test to assist Australia as it had been one of his and the team’s favourites. “I think the conditions are going to be similar to what we always expect at the Gabba, it’s probably going to do a little bit on the first day and it’ll have good pace and bounce.
“Our guys particularly like batting at the Gabba,” he said. “It can be really challenging in the first 15 minutes but once you get through that, it’s a very true pitch and you get a nice feel off the bat and can score very quickly and play all your shots.”