Test great Glenn McGrath has hailed Australia's rediscovery of "bit of mongrel" in the Ashes series and said they were starting to resemble the top teams of the past. (Also read: Harris battles sore knee ahead of Perth Test)
Australia are 2-0 up in the five-match series against England and could take an unbeatable lead if they win the Perth Test starting Friday after humbling the tourists in Brisbane and Adelaide. (Related: Cook's brain in scrambled, says Boycott)
Since meekly losing the Ashes in England earlier this year, Australia's performances have been defined by fierce fast bowling, dogged batting and a more aggressive attitude.
McGrath said it was good to see. "Australia play best when they've got a bit of mongrel about them, when they play hard out in the middle, when they don't give an inch, when they play an aggressive brand of cricket," he said in a column for a betting website.
"It's something that has been missing for a little while and they're back there now. They are a team I'd be proud to be a part of."
McGrath, who took 563 Test wickets at 21.64, credited paceman Mitchell Johnson for "injecting Australia's psyche with a bit of confidence".
"What he must do is not get carried away and still execute his plans, but there is no reason that Mitch, alongside Ryan Harris and Peter Siddle, can't keep doing that," said McGrath.
"I've been saying for the last few months that Mitch was going to have a huge impact on this series, so I'm not surprised by the way he's played. I'm backing him again to have a big match in Perth.
"He had the English batsman jumping about on what was supposed to be a fairly docile track at Adelaide so I can't wait to see him on the speed gun at the WACA." (We're not scared of Johnson, says England coach Flower)
Ahead of the series, McGrath predicted a 5-0 whitewash of England and he is standing by his call. "England continued to look like a rabbit in the headlights at Adelaide and I can't see a way back for them," he said.