The Ashes, 2006-07 October 29, 2006

Gilchrist expects stiff challenge from England quicks

Cricinfo staff

Adam Gilchrist's dismissal against England brought back memories of the Ashes last year © Getty Images

Adam Gilchrist expects England's fast bowlers to come hard at him again in the forthcoming Ashes. He also stated that the Australians will have their task cut out trying to tackle the ball swinging into the left-handers, which the England bowlers exploited to the hilt in last year's Ashes.

"It's going to be a tactic of theirs," Gilchrist told The Sunday Mail. "Like any tactic that an opponent has, you have to be prepared for it and plan how you are going to counter it.

"They used it to good effect against a couple of our left-handers in England last year with the reverse-swinging ball. I'm sure they will try to expose that again. We've thought long and hard about it. We've chatted about it to try to come up with plans."

In the pre-Ashes clash in the Champions Trophy at Jaipur, fast bowler Sajid Mahmood dismissed Gilchrist by getting one to swing in from around the wicket, cramping him for room and forcing an inside edge which crashed onto his off stump. Gilchrist had a similar predicament in last year's Ashes series in England, during which he aggregated a disappointing 181 runs in five matches, failing to score a half century. Andrew Flintoff exploited the weakness in Gilchrist's technique, dismissing him five times in the series. Besides Gilchrist, several Australian batsmen were caught off guard with the reverse swing, which had a telling effect on the result of the series.

Fresh from his 92 against West Indies in the previous match, Gilchrist gave full credit to Mahmood for outfoxing him at Jaipur, and expected other teams to adopt the same strategy against him.

"Mahmood bowled a really nice delivery from around there the other night," he continued. "But there's no denying that teams will target that area of my game. I'm well aware of that so I'll be doing all I can to try to counter that."