India in Australia 2011-12 January 19, 2012

Keep me on the Test treadmill - Siddle


Should Michael Clarke and Mickey Arthur call for a voluntary Adelaide redundancy from one of the four fast bowlers who cut India to pieces at the WACA ground, Peter Siddle will not be raising his hand for a rest.

Despite playing in each of Australia's past eight Tests and showing signs of exhaustion at times during his typically full-blooded spells in Perth, Siddle said the swiftness of the victory had allowed him to freshen up and he had no intention of giving up his place unless compelled to do so by the selectors.

"I wouldn't think so. Any opportunity to play for Australia is a great honour and I definitely don't want to give my spot up to anyone else and let them have the opportunity," Siddle said in Melbourne. "I want to play. But we'll have to see what happens in the future. Whether it's the one-dayers, in the West Indies, that sort of thing. We'll have to the discussions [about a rest] but my thoughts are definitely to play.

"I've pulled up really good. It's always nice to finish up in just over two days. It was quite a surprise that we got it done so early and it was good to get home for a few days. I'm feeling good, the body's great and I'm looking forward to getting over to Adelaide."

A method capable of exploiting uneven bounce, a high level of fitness and a standing as the most experienced member of the attack suggest Siddle will play in Adelaide, with the choice of 12th man more likely to be between Ben Hilfenhaus and Mitchell Starc. Though he is the leading wicket-taker in the series, Hilfenhaus has not fared too well at the Adelaide Oval. Starc's status as the junior pace bowler is balanced by his left-arm variety and his ability to create footmarks for Nathan Lyon's offspin.

Siddle said he was more open to the prospect of being rested from the ODI tri-series that follows the Tests, though both he and Ryan Harris would enjoy the chance to turn out in coloured clothing again after missing all of Australia's engagements in 2011.

"At the moment we've got a few injuries so hopefully I do get my opportunity to get back in there and have a crack, obviously I want to," Siddle said. "But I guess those boys will be coming back at the same time, so there might be a time that they can have a look at a few of us and give us a bit of a rest and get a few different blokes in there."

Among other reasons for Siddle's enthusiasm to keep bowing is simply the fact he has never bowled better than this summer. Since learning to adhere to Craig McDermott's mantra of fuller lengths spiced with the odd bouncer, Siddle has gained swing many did not think he was capable of, while maintaining the aggression that made him popular with Clarke's predecessor Ricky Ponting.

"I think that getting dropped in Sri Lanka hurt and I knew I had to work harder and do a lot more for the team to get the rewards," Siddle said. "Just the consistency that I'm bowling with at the moment and the patience and showing the other boys, helping lead them as well, it's been good fun."

McDermott has not tinkered with too much of Siddle's technique, aside from watching his front arm closely and also suggesting a more splayed-finger grip to accentuate the right seam position for swing. But he has offered plenty of know-how about how to dismiss Test-quality batsmen.

"He played a lot of Test cricket and took a lot of wickets himself and just that knowledge on how to get batsmen out, how to go about it in different conditions, has helped tremendously," Siddle said. "He hasn't done a lot with our actions or the technical side of things - it's all about what you've got is what you've got and to use that. The knowledge is about how to build pressure and how to get certain players out. That help has been a tremendous part of how we've been playing."

Daniel Brettig is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo. He tweets here

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Karl on January 21, 2012, 10:29 GMT

    While Starc is busy creating marks for Lyon he is also roughing it up for Ashwin... Dunno why need to rest up when it is the last gig for the test series make more sense to have a spell in the middle... Give off a couple of ODI and rest up and go home for a week if need to after the tests... Rotate Haddin out (nice way of saying drop him) why is it the bowlers that need the rest...

  • Dummy4 on January 20, 2012, 14:07 GMT

    Siddles batting is a big plus in his favour.

  • Prasanna on January 20, 2012, 12:57 GMT

    How times change .. this time last year, we got mauled by the Poms and didnt have the direction to take , searching for clues in the dark. But we are Aussies, and we have been in this situation before. And so it happened - the Argus review - the result ? - a new management - a superb bowling coach, a very good captain and an equally good coach. Billy deserves a big party for his contribution since taking over as the bowling coach - man- we are bowling out sides too often than not !! Hope we grow from strength to strength from here and get "that" one - "The Urn".

  • Kendal on January 20, 2012, 10:07 GMT

    @jonesy2 .. I am no England fan but to call their bowling attack mickey mouse is not a very objective opinion to say the least. They killed your batsmen in the last Ashes or is that something you have chosen to erase from your memory? All the same, I agree with you that Siddle is a 'proper mean fast bowler,' keeping the spirit of Merv alive in Australian fast bowling...

  • rahul on January 20, 2012, 10:02 GMT


  • Roo on January 20, 2012, 5:56 GMT

    Wouldn't expect anything less from Siddle - 1 Test to go before WI tour in April... Siddle cares more about Test cricket & much less about ODI's & 20/20's - as should all top players... Lets hope CA looks at this during the Tri-nation series & rest/rotate the top bowlers... Siddle & Harris for Adelaide definitely - we need this 4-0 result to keep pressure up for the future...

  • Andrew on January 20, 2012, 2:41 GMT

    Yep - never thought Siddle could swing a ball, (well never saw it in his previous couple of years at international level). Now that he swings the ball, the parrallels betwenn him & Craig Mac are quite strong! I have always rated Siddle's heart as a Test bowler (not always his skill), however I don't want him anywhere near the ODI side. IMO - (stats can back this up), his ODI bowling is crap, it's not like we have run out of pace options. Pacers that could be worth a try during the tri-series are McKay, Cutting, A McDermott, Starc, Coulter-Nile, Herrick & Bollinger & Feldman (know that's a bit of an outsider). I do believe we have to rotate fast bowlers, & I think a primary cause of injuries is the travel between games. So I say after Adelaide, tell Siddle & Hilfy go play Shield games & report at the airport when the boys fly out to the WIndies.

  • Bilal on January 20, 2012, 0:58 GMT

    Its time for CA to call an end to this comedy show called "Border-Gavaskar" trophy and play some REAL TEST CRICKET by inviting Pakistan cricket team for a yearly war of test cricket skills under the banner of "Imran-Lillee" trophy. The fans are yearning to see some quality test cricket.

  • Ben on January 19, 2012, 13:54 GMT

    Wow, we've gone from having no decent fast bowlers in Australia to having an embarrassment of riches overnight. Where are all the 60+ average batsmen hiding?

  • Dummy4 on January 19, 2012, 11:10 GMT

    Against Popat side like India- all want to bowl and get wickets

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