Daniel Christian June 7, 2014

'Scoring a hundred is better than taking a five-for'

Daniel Christian talks about his hat-trick at the MCG, the toughest bowlers he has faced, and the first player he would choose in a World T20 XI

How would you assess your Australia career to now?
Unfulfilled. I've always been a fringe player in the short forms of the game for the last few years. It'd be nice to get my spot in the side nailed down. That has to be my aim right now.

Do you still harbour hopes of playing Test cricket for your country?
It'd be nice to say yes. But looking at it realistically, I'm probably past that opportunity now. I have to concentrate on getting my short-form spot sealed.

Talk us through your hat-trick against Sri Lanka in 2012. Did you genuinely believe Nuwan Kulasekara was out? It was slipping down leg.
I really did. It felt out from where I was. I was obviously in my follow-through but he fell over right in front. It wasn't until I got off and we watched it back that I realised that Hawk-Eye had it missing leg. It makes you wonder, though, doesn't it? How many hat-tricks have people got when they weren't actually out?

Was that the highlight of your career?
Quite comfortably. A hat-trick and five wickets at the MCG. It doesn't get much better than that.

Who is the best coach you have played under?
Darren Lehmann. The sense of empowerment he gives players is amazing. He makes us all feel incredible before we go out there.

What's more rewarding: scoring a hundred or taking five wickets?
It'd have to be making a hundred.

Are you an allrounder who enjoys batting more than bowling, then?
It's a tricky one. I enjoy them both and it varies day by day, really. If I bowl a bad ball, I get to go back to my mark and have another chance. If I play a bad shot, that's me done.

Which of your Australian team-mates has the most annoying habits?
Maxy [Glenn Maxwell]. He is very messy and has bad hygiene. In fact, he stinks!

Who would you least like to hear sing at a karaoke night?
Maxwell again. He has no singing talent whatsoever.

Who is last at the bar to buy a round of drinks?
David Hussey. He's just been tight for a long time.

Who is the most inspirational cricketer you have played with?
Ricky Ponting. He had such an aura about him. Everything he did had that sense of being in control. He was just brilliant.

Who is the fittest in the Australian side?
Mitchell Johnson. Oh, hang on, maybe Brad Haddin. He's pretty fit. It's out of those two.

And the least?
Finchy [Aaron Finch]!

Who is the greatest Australian allrounder you have seen?
That's a tricky one. I used to love watching the Waugh brothers in ODI cricket growing up. Steve used to come in and bowl his plethora of slower balls, then smash it about. I enjoyed that.

What has been the best match you have ever played in?
The Twenty20 Cup final with Hampshire in 2010 was mad. I'd done my quad and needed a runner - and I still ended up running! I nearly lost us that.

When did you realise that you could have been run out?
Everyone was going mad. The boys had run on the pitch and I went to shake hands with the umpire. The umpire shook my hand and said, "You might want to go and get back in." I just thought I had to get in at either end. I didn't know the rules!

Which bowler have you found toughest to face in your career?
Murali. He just gives you no chance of getting him away. Lasith Malinga is up there too. He's never got me out but he's so hard to score against.

You are out and have to perform a party trick. What would you do?
Try to avoid it! I'm not good at being the centre of attention.

If you had to choose a World T20 XI, who would be the first name on the team sheet?
That's so difficult. I can only choose one?

Yes. Could this be your third answer of Glenn Maxwell?
Oh Maxy is incredible, unreal. He's a freak with absolutely no fear of any game situation. It could be him, but I'll go with Shane Watson. He bats and bowls and does everything.