Chappell-Hadlee Series, 2007-08 December 7, 2007

Tait to use one-dayers to push for Test spot

Cricinfo staff

Shaun Tait aims to be back in the Test frame © Getty Images
Shaun Tait will use the three one-dayers against New Zealand in his bid to get back into the Test frame. Tait dropped out of the Test squad for Sri Lanka with an elbow injury, and had to watch Mitchell Johnson bowl credibly in the third fast bowler's slot.

But he says he will target the Chappell-Hadlee Series, which starts at his home ground in Adelaide next Friday, to push for selection for the India Tests, which begin on Boxing Day. He also has Tuesday's Twenty20 in Perth to further his claims, which have already been boosted by a ten-wicket match haul against Queensland in the Pura Cup, including 7 for 29.

"It's in the back of my mind," Tait told The Age. "I can't lie, I suppose, but at this stage I'm just stoked to be back in the one-day side. Last time was the World Cup so it's exciting. I'll concentrate on that for the next couple of weeks."

Tait said he enjoyed the edge of competing for a Test spot with Johnson, saying that when he gets his chance he wishes him all the best. "It's healthy competing. We're all mates," Tait said. "It's fantastic and likewise with myself. In this day and age there's so many good players around you've just got to accept it."

Brad Haddin is similarly happy to be in the one-day squad, but he has a different aim - to nail a spot as a batsman in his own right, rather than a back-up keeper to Adam Gilchrist. This has always been his target, he says, but he's moving ever closer to achieving it after he was included in the one-day squad for his batting, following on from the one-dayers in India in October when he batted in Ricky Ponting's absence while Gilchrist kept.

"It's something I've been working on for a long time now to be considered in the team on my own merits while Adam is still in the squad," he told AAP. "It's been probably a four to five year process and it's finally come about."

Haddin's recent one-day form is impressive. He made 200 runs at 66.66 against India, with two half-centuries in four innings, and he has 239 domestic runs at 79.66 so far.

He will be concentrating on Australia's bid to reclaim the Chappell-Hadlee trophy after New Zealand took the series 3-0 last season. "We really want that trophy back," he said. "We don't want our little cousins to be holding it for much longer, we'd much rather have it in our trophy cabinet."