South Africa in Australia 2008-09 December 5, 2008

Fletcher has 'fresh plans' to beat Australia - Kallis

Cricinfo staff

Can Mickey Arthur and Duncan Fletcher plot Australia's downfall? © Getty Images

Jacques Kallis has said Australia can expect a few surprises from a South African think-tank that includes Duncan Fletcher during their upcoming three-Test series. Fletcher was England's coach when they won the Ashes in 2005.

"We have worked well with Duncan and he has got some new ideas to beat Australia," Kallis told the Herald Sun. "He's got some thoughts from the 2005 Ashes . . . but he has quite a few fresh plans for Australia this time around "

England's victory during the 2005 Ashes revolved largely around a four-man pace attack, with the likes of Simon Jones and Andrew Flintoff troubling the Australian batsman with reverse-swing, so much so that Australia hired Troy Cooley, England's bowling coach during the 2005 contest.

It was during Fletcher's tenure, though, that England were blanked 5-0 in Australia, in 2006-07, and Australia have not lost a home series since 1992-93, when they were beaten 2-1 by West Indies in a five-Test series. Their record since that series reads: won 26, drawn 2.

"I obviously can't say much more on that . . . but our bowling is going to be quite crucial for us," Kallis said.

"There will be key moments in this series and we want to take advantage of them," he said. "Australia have had a good couple of years and we are looking at this series as a huge challenge for us. We want to win any series but this one is particularly crucial for us.

"Australia have been the benchmark and really dominant for the past 12 or 13 years and that is something we aspire to." South Africa are yet to win a Test series in Australia, and have not won a contest against them since their readmission in 1991.

They head to Australia unbeaten in their last nine Test series - winning eight of those - and are currently ranked No. 2 in the ICC rankings. Their last series loss was in Sri Lanka in 2006, with their only draw since then coming away against India earlier this year. Australia recently lost 2-0 to India but are still No. 1, a spot Ponting is confident they will maintain even if they lose against South Africa.

The three-Test series begins in Perth on December 17, and will be followed by a return three-Test series from February.