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The Ashes 2010-11

Arthur backs Hussey's experience

ESPNcricinfo staff

November 3, 2010

Comments: 17 | Text size: A | A

Michael Hussey works the ball during his unbeaten 71, Australia v Sri Lanka, 1st ODI, Melbourne
Mike Hussey found the boundary just once in his 71 © Getty Images
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Mickey Arthur, Mike Hussey's coach at Western Australia, has backed the under-fire middle-order batsman and is adamant that "Australia would be wrong if they didn't pick Hussey."

Hussey battled his way back to some sort of form with a gritty, unbeaten 71 that stitched Australia's middle order together in the first one-dayer against Sri Lanka at Melbourne. Though it was not the prettiest of knocks, it may help quieten questions over his worth in the Test side ahead of the Ashes.

Hussey, 35, has scored just two Test centuries in the past 18 months and, most recently, had two indifferent series against Pakistan in England and India in India. Hoping for some first-class practice ahead of the first Test at Brisbane, he played in WA's Sheffield Shield match against South Australia last week but was out first ball in the first innings and managed just three runs second time round.

But Arthur, formerly South Africa's coach, believes Hussey's experience could prove crucial as Australia seek to regain the Ashes. "He has a wealth of experience," said Arthur. "You need your experienced players in a Test match against England and the first Test match of a series, it's really important."

"I guess you're always a little bit down if you don't score any runs but he's been fine. We did a bit of work and he's hitting the ball exceptionally well. Technically, there's nothing wrong with him. Mike will be fine and I expect him to play in that first Test match. He just needs a hit-out somewhere and he'll get that in the one-dayers and he'll be fine."

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Posted by sarikkoirala on (November 4, 2010, 12:11 GMT)

Despite the fact that at one time,Hussey was compared to Bradman , i find it very disappointing to see a capable player likeHhussey fail with the bat for a long stretch of time as now...with Callumn Ferguson having proven a point and the selectors impressed,i think the time now has come for the ausies to drop hussey and bring callum ferguson in

Posted by   on (November 4, 2010, 12:03 GMT)

What's annoying about Australia's losing streak is that we are losing test matches with older players in the team. Ponting, he's the captain and our best player even when he's not in form. Katich until recently was one of our most dependable players. Unfortunately, Hussey and North are being too inconsistent, and because of their 30+ age it is really frustrating. It is easier to handle when there's guys in their early 20s trying to start their careers, but when its the elder guys not performing it sucks. Hussey is great in the ODIs at the moment, thats where he should stay. And its this form which keeps him in the test side, but he's just been found wanting for a long time now. I really like the bloke, but unfortunately its time for him to move on and try some younger players like Khawaja, Ferguson, White, Hughes, Smith, Bailey, Cosgrove, Cowan, Finch, Marsh.

Posted by   on (November 4, 2010, 8:23 GMT)

How come some guys in the Australian team stay for quite awhile despite bad performances while others like a certain Brad Hodge gets dropped after a 200 against SAF and never gets picked again despite scoring so much that he got sick of it? Would someone be kind enough to answer me? I am a very confused Indian fan :-O

Posted by Proteas123 on (November 4, 2010, 8:03 GMT)

I think england would rather not have Hussey in the ashes, that fact alone is a good reason to keep him. He is a quality player, guess his recent form is a concern but he cerntainly can turn it around and should be backed.

Posted by Something_Witty on (November 4, 2010, 7:05 GMT)

Well said CustomKid. Hussey is and will always be remembered as a great player, but sadly, his time in the sun has finished.

Posted by srivatsan on (November 4, 2010, 4:39 GMT)

it's the other way. drop him and win ashes! lol

Posted by muzika_tchaikovskogo on (November 4, 2010, 4:12 GMT)

I am an admirer of the man, but I too say that its time for Hussey to go. Let's face it: over the last 18 months or so he's hardly looked like the dominating batsman he once was and of the two centuries he's scored in that period, one of them- at the Oval last August- was made at a stage when the game and series were effectively gone. A 35 year-old in the last legs of his career is a luxury a side in serious decline can ill-afford.

Posted by   on (November 4, 2010, 3:07 GMT)

Hussey should be given one last chance at Brisbane and so should North. Australia must get in Khwaja and Ferguson early in case these two fail. There is no point in getting them in after the first couple of games are gone. It is the middle order that has been the problem. I expect Haddin to score, as he has in the past, but a lot will depend on Ponting. Ponting is key and he did bat well in India. The ball should bounce which is a good thing for some Australian batsmen and certaiinly for Stuart Broad. The fitter team will win and if the Australian pacemen are fit and hold up then it will be a close series. Yesterday"s innings for Hussey was good as the match in India. He is a very good limited overs player and a wonderful influence on the team , has been part of both the winning and currently losing Australian team. He has also had a few bad decisions against him. I hope he comes good for his and Australia"s sake sridhar

Posted by CustomKid on (November 3, 2010, 22:40 GMT)

As much as I love Hussey it's time for him to go in Test match cricket. His form in ODI and 20/20's has never been in question, however he just doesn't cut it in tests. When he first got in the test side he was so on top of his game with quick foot work - if we were in trouble you would back him every time. Now he just looks lost. His feet don't move at all well and he was always so strong at leaving the ball outside off. The last two years it has been his down fall, getting caught in the slips or even worse leaving balls alone and having his off peg removed.

Popcorn you are so wrong - The last 3 seasons he's averaged 36 in tests with two hundreds. Where in those stats is he scoring when it counts? His poor form has made the test middle order unstable. Again ODI's t20's no problems but where it counts in tests his results are a disgrace.

I'm a massive fan of Mr Cricket but all good things must come to an end. He's now painful to watch in tests so bad is his form and its time to go

Posted by phoenixsteve on (November 3, 2010, 21:52 GMT)

Just a correction for joseyesu .... Australia can't retain the ashes .... they don't hold them! ENGLAND HAVE THE ASHES! It's interesting that both sides have middle order problems though. I doubt any of the Aussies have been in as poor testmatch touch as KP though? Cook, KP, Morgan, Trott and Collingwood could all be embarrassments! I really hope not - it's set up to be a classic series.... COME ON ENGLAND!

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