The Investec Ashes 2013 June 30, 2013

Hughes retraces Lehmann's footsteps

Hughes has one thing in common with his coach - unorthodoxy. But Lehmann's presence should be useful in helping the left-hander deal with spin
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Phillip Hughes was not yet in school when Darren Lehmann had already learned to deal with the sorts of criticism so often attached to that most fascinating, entertaining and occasionally infuriating of batsman: the unorthodox left-hander. Now as Australia's new coach, Lehmann is ideally placed to help Hughes deal with troubles against spin bowling that have become the latest of a series of mountains for the younger man to climb.

Much like Hughes, Lehmann's technique and choices of mentors were questioned. His chances of making it as an international cricketer were dismissed out of hand for reasons like "he plays half his matches in Adelaide", "looks jumpy against pace" and even the odd allegation of "scores too quickly". Unlike Hughes, those critiques helped stop Lehmann from playing international cricket until his first-class career was a decade old.

Both share a ravenous appetite for run-scoring and a knack for making hundreds. Hughes in fact outstrips Lehmann in his early aptitude for doing so - by the age of 24, Lehmann had 17 first-class hundreds to Hughes' 21, none of them in Tests. But one major point of difference is their relative comfort when facing spin. Lehmann was near peerless at his best; Hughes is near shot-less at his worst.

"Obviously he's only just come in recently but I'll be talking to him day in and day out about especially spin," Hughes said. "Because he really dominated spin bowling through his whole career so it's something we can all keep working on and he'll be fantastic for that.

"I studied him when I was younger, I loved watching him play, and I think the aggressive way he went about it is something I try and do as well and a number of the boys in the team model our games around. So it's good to have him around and he's really putting us into that positive frame of mind."

Positivity is important to Hughes more than most. An improved capability against spin, and the denial of negative or survival-oriented thoughts will be critical if Hughes is to bat down that order, as he was commissioned to do in the first innings at Taunton.

"I really enjoyed batting at No.5 and then obviously 3 [in the second innings], but it's only a number next to your name and I've always said that I don't really mind where I bat," Hughes said. "It's just about opportunity really and about performing. I think it's a good thing giving everyone a go in different positions just to see. I've been lucky enough to go from opener all the way down to 5 now so it's a good thing. It's only something you can continue to work on."

One point of progress during Hughes' innings of 76* and 50 against Somerset was his ability to rotate the strike against the spin of George Dockrell. There were well-struck sixes too, but the singles were more instructive as to Hughes' best chance of thriving against Graeme Swann, not allowing England's No. 1 spinner to work him over.

"Yeah it's nice to get off strike, doesn't matter who you're really facing especially at the start of your innings to work into it," Hughes said. "They kept changing the field and you want to try and manipulate that as much as possible. I thought he bowled quite well, there was a fair bit of rough outside off stump, so it was nice to get to the other end today against a spinner and on a dry pitch."

Hughes and the rest of the tourists have now settled in Worcestershire, which in 2012 proved a critical juncture for him after a horrid summer in Australia that began with "caught Guptill, bowled Martin" and ended with his departure from New South Wales. Much as Lehmann's international prospects only gathered momentum after he ventured to Yorkshire and proved his ability to play on a greater variety of surfaces, Hughes' horizons were broadened at Worcester, not least by their coach Steve Rhodes.

"It was nice to get away from a lot of things and go out there and enjoy my cricket and the four or five months I was there, it was times I'll never forget," Hughes said. "I speak to Rhodesy a fair bit and I can't wait to catch up with him again, and have a few chats along the way. But they've been real good and he really gave me that freedom to go out there and express myself.

"It's a bit like my second home. They really looked after me there for the four or five months I spent there, it was really good for my confidence 12 months back, and I'll be meeting with all the guys over the next few days and catch up for dinner. They made me feel welcome when I was there and it's going to be good to see some mates."

No doubt Lehmann can relate to that, too.

Daniel Brettig is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo. He tweets here

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • POSTED BY AussieSam on | June 30, 2013, 13:28 GMT

    I really hope that Hughes manages to overcome the issues he's having at the moment. The story of his debut series has to be one of the best ever and it would be a shame if he didn't go on to have a great career. Everyone remembers the twin hundreds he made in the second test, but it was the 75 he made in the second innings of the first test which effectively won the match and probably therefore the series. And against the best bowling attack in the world at the time.

    Although I prefer to watch batsmen with more traditional techniques there is a certain charm about the way he plays and I really enjoyed one of the hundreds he made in the Aussie home summer this year.

  • POSTED BY ScottStevo on | July 1, 2013, 11:22 GMT

    @landl47, and you demonstrate a common Eng failure of analysis; the failure to read what was written. I stated that Swann's record vs Australia is pretty ordinary - which it is! As stated by others, Swann's record in 09 was similar to that of Hauritz who wasn't selected to play on the only useful deck, according to you, in that series. One of these players is lauded as the greatest and the other labelled useless. Overrated is an understatement for this bloke! The only real alarming stat for Aus vs Swann is that his record against left handers is far, far superior to his fairly ordinary record against right handers.

  • POSTED BY Dazako on | July 1, 2013, 10:54 GMT

    Im going to be straight to the point here, I dont think Swans offies will bother Hughes or any of the Aussies who played in India. No matter what the curators do there is no way that any of the pitches will look like roland gaross center cour,t as they did in India. With the way Hughes progressed on those clay courts puts him in good stead to whack little Swanny out of the park. Prepare dry pitches at your own peril England.

  • POSTED BY mukesh_LOVE.cricket on | July 1, 2013, 9:36 GMT

    I would love to see philip hughes succeed against England , 21 first class centuries before the age of 24 suggest something special , but he needs to tighten up his game a bit , spin is a weakness but i think the way he played against India towards the end of test series suggested good improvement ,in fact he was bit unfortunate to be on the wrong side of umpiring decisions in at least 2 innings

  • POSTED BY DeckChairand6pack on | July 1, 2013, 9:27 GMT

    Hughes' debut series was incredible and I remember him impudently planting Dale Steyn in Kingsmead's new stand a few times. Helped win them the series. Highlights his descent when you think that he was not picked in the first match of last years Aussie homes series against the same attack. Undoubtedly a very talented player, but I am sure the English seam attack will be licking their lips at the prospect of bowling to him. I can see him hitting some superb cuts and drives before being caught in the cordon for 30 to 40 runs.

  • POSTED BY Edwards_Anderson on | July 1, 2013, 4:15 GMT

    He has alot of work to do against spin and swing bowling, this series will prove if he is ready, i fear he might not be.

  • POSTED BY OneEyedAussie on | July 1, 2013, 3:04 GMT

    It's encouraging to hear Hughes talking about getting more singles. His main problem now is that he has trained himself to go to the cut shot too often. I am sure that he thinks that he needs to score and immediately goes for the big cut. Focusing on low risk singles is the way forward against spin for both Hughes and Warner. Knock it around and get a few singles - cause the field to change and then cash in on the short ball outside of off-stump.

  • POSTED BY RodStark on | July 1, 2013, 2:15 GMT

    Ny recollection is that Hughes made a blistering start to his test career. Then other teams figured out he couldn't play swing very well, so he got dropped. Then he got picked again, and other teams figured out he wan't very good against spin either. So what is good aginst except attacks like the Somerset second XI? Maybe he's getting it figured out, but we'll have to wait to see if he can do it at the top level consistently.

    Also, it's worth remember that "Boof", the role model, wasn't good enough to make it into the great Australian teams till right at the end of his career. He's hardly one of the greats of Australian cricket, though I would admit that England would have been more than delighted to have had someone of his ability at that time.

  • POSTED BY Chris_P on | July 1, 2013, 0:43 GMT

    I was fortunate to watch him come into the first class stage at a very young age & he was unbelievable against all types of bowling, his form leading him to be selected against Steyn & Co in South Africa. Somehow or somewhere, some batting "coach" fiddled around with his technique because he looked ungainly & he looked nothing like the player he was when he was a freewheeling batsman. Let's not forget, most of his early games were played on the spin friendly SCG pitch where his use of feet was admirable. I saw glimplss of it in the 3rd test against India. Granted, he has a long way to go, but, with all the runs & centuries has already scored at a young age would suggest there is plenty of talent there, he is just not showing it all.

  • POSTED BY Rabbito on | June 30, 2013, 21:29 GMT

    The biggest thing about huges and all other batsmen really, is not talent or technique. Hughes has go loads of talent, and i really like the guy. having a brilliant, traditional sound technique is also not essential. Whats essential, especially in batting is being mentally strong. give me a guy with a doubful technique and talent with great mental strength over a guy with a weak mind/mentality and great technique and talent. to be able to push on when scoring is not easy, without playing loose shots and getting out and keeping yourself 'under control' is all mental. and i rekon this is something that could be improved a bit in our aussie side. and i rekon lehmann will do it.

  • POSTED BY AussieSam on | June 30, 2013, 13:28 GMT

    I really hope that Hughes manages to overcome the issues he's having at the moment. The story of his debut series has to be one of the best ever and it would be a shame if he didn't go on to have a great career. Everyone remembers the twin hundreds he made in the second test, but it was the 75 he made in the second innings of the first test which effectively won the match and probably therefore the series. And against the best bowling attack in the world at the time.

    Although I prefer to watch batsmen with more traditional techniques there is a certain charm about the way he plays and I really enjoyed one of the hundreds he made in the Aussie home summer this year.

  • POSTED BY ScottStevo on | July 1, 2013, 11:22 GMT

    @landl47, and you demonstrate a common Eng failure of analysis; the failure to read what was written. I stated that Swann's record vs Australia is pretty ordinary - which it is! As stated by others, Swann's record in 09 was similar to that of Hauritz who wasn't selected to play on the only useful deck, according to you, in that series. One of these players is lauded as the greatest and the other labelled useless. Overrated is an understatement for this bloke! The only real alarming stat for Aus vs Swann is that his record against left handers is far, far superior to his fairly ordinary record against right handers.

  • POSTED BY Dazako on | July 1, 2013, 10:54 GMT

    Im going to be straight to the point here, I dont think Swans offies will bother Hughes or any of the Aussies who played in India. No matter what the curators do there is no way that any of the pitches will look like roland gaross center cour,t as they did in India. With the way Hughes progressed on those clay courts puts him in good stead to whack little Swanny out of the park. Prepare dry pitches at your own peril England.

  • POSTED BY mukesh_LOVE.cricket on | July 1, 2013, 9:36 GMT

    I would love to see philip hughes succeed against England , 21 first class centuries before the age of 24 suggest something special , but he needs to tighten up his game a bit , spin is a weakness but i think the way he played against India towards the end of test series suggested good improvement ,in fact he was bit unfortunate to be on the wrong side of umpiring decisions in at least 2 innings

  • POSTED BY DeckChairand6pack on | July 1, 2013, 9:27 GMT

    Hughes' debut series was incredible and I remember him impudently planting Dale Steyn in Kingsmead's new stand a few times. Helped win them the series. Highlights his descent when you think that he was not picked in the first match of last years Aussie homes series against the same attack. Undoubtedly a very talented player, but I am sure the English seam attack will be licking their lips at the prospect of bowling to him. I can see him hitting some superb cuts and drives before being caught in the cordon for 30 to 40 runs.

  • POSTED BY Edwards_Anderson on | July 1, 2013, 4:15 GMT

    He has alot of work to do against spin and swing bowling, this series will prove if he is ready, i fear he might not be.

  • POSTED BY OneEyedAussie on | July 1, 2013, 3:04 GMT

    It's encouraging to hear Hughes talking about getting more singles. His main problem now is that he has trained himself to go to the cut shot too often. I am sure that he thinks that he needs to score and immediately goes for the big cut. Focusing on low risk singles is the way forward against spin for both Hughes and Warner. Knock it around and get a few singles - cause the field to change and then cash in on the short ball outside of off-stump.

  • POSTED BY RodStark on | July 1, 2013, 2:15 GMT

    Ny recollection is that Hughes made a blistering start to his test career. Then other teams figured out he couldn't play swing very well, so he got dropped. Then he got picked again, and other teams figured out he wan't very good against spin either. So what is good aginst except attacks like the Somerset second XI? Maybe he's getting it figured out, but we'll have to wait to see if he can do it at the top level consistently.

    Also, it's worth remember that "Boof", the role model, wasn't good enough to make it into the great Australian teams till right at the end of his career. He's hardly one of the greats of Australian cricket, though I would admit that England would have been more than delighted to have had someone of his ability at that time.

  • POSTED BY Chris_P on | July 1, 2013, 0:43 GMT

    I was fortunate to watch him come into the first class stage at a very young age & he was unbelievable against all types of bowling, his form leading him to be selected against Steyn & Co in South Africa. Somehow or somewhere, some batting "coach" fiddled around with his technique because he looked ungainly & he looked nothing like the player he was when he was a freewheeling batsman. Let's not forget, most of his early games were played on the spin friendly SCG pitch where his use of feet was admirable. I saw glimplss of it in the 3rd test against India. Granted, he has a long way to go, but, with all the runs & centuries has already scored at a young age would suggest there is plenty of talent there, he is just not showing it all.

  • POSTED BY Rabbito on | June 30, 2013, 21:29 GMT

    The biggest thing about huges and all other batsmen really, is not talent or technique. Hughes has go loads of talent, and i really like the guy. having a brilliant, traditional sound technique is also not essential. Whats essential, especially in batting is being mentally strong. give me a guy with a doubful technique and talent with great mental strength over a guy with a weak mind/mentality and great technique and talent. to be able to push on when scoring is not easy, without playing loose shots and getting out and keeping yourself 'under control' is all mental. and i rekon this is something that could be improved a bit in our aussie side. and i rekon lehmann will do it.

  • POSTED BY mukesh_LOVE.cricket on | June 30, 2013, 18:28 GMT

    I think somewhere in the back of their mind this England team is afraid of Aussie fast bowlers , they know how dangerous Starc / Pattinson / Harris (if he is playing) will be on a seaming and swinging pitch, so they went for plan B- prepare turning pitches , England definitely have the edge in spin department with 2 good spinners and batsmen who can play spin better , CT pitches were all offering good turn

  • POSTED BY Front-Foot-Lunge on | June 30, 2013, 17:19 GMT

    Swann has been licking his lips to bowl at Hughes for the last 2 years, just like he was for the Ashes prior to that. Come to think of it, every English bowler is waiting to bowl at him and these Australian club cricketers. Their waiting will end very soon.

  • POSTED BY Mitty2 on | June 30, 2013, 16:52 GMT

    Agree on your first comment @landl47, but he just has too much talent to not succeed - in my eyes. 21 FC centuries at 24, with an amazing - more than brilliant - debut series against SA, he simply needs to step up and become our best batsmen. Confidence is key, if he gets that confidence, his palpable technical defeciencies will be overcome and he will prove his critics wrong in a massive fashion. Many Australians want to disregard him completely, and the management of him has been terrible admittedly, but we simply cannot afford to let him go and we HAVE to persist with him. Hughes needs to know that these series aren't the be all and end all; he needs the mental freedom and resulting confidence.

    But on your second comment (I have argued this before), you compare him to the spinners that we used and compare their averages, but the flaw in that is simple... Both beer and Doherty are terrible 'spinners'. And in '09 hauritz had a better record than him. But, swann is much better now...

  • POSTED BY James_Murphy on | June 30, 2013, 15:44 GMT

    Sorry @landl47 but picking only 2 of 10 matches for swann for analysis is a bit far fetched. That's one in five. If you are to say Australia only has to worry about him on one test those odds look good for Australia. Starc and Pattinson will be very dangerous on seaming pitches, more so than broad and co and our tail should contribute 120 runs on average. Swann is not a threat, Hughes should have a great series. Watson too. Can't wait to see the 4/5/6/7 combination of Clarke, Hughes, Warner and Hadfin. That is devastating in anyone's language.

  • POSTED BY landl47 on | June 30, 2013, 13:56 GMT

    @ScottStevo: you demonstrate a common Aussie failure of analysis- you look at Swann's 10 tests against Aus as a whole and say his record is mediocre. That's because only two of those tests gave him anything in the wicket to work with- the Oval in 2009 and Adelaide in 2010/11. In those two tests he was a major contributor to England victories- 8 wickets at the Oval and a 6fer in the second innings at Adelaide. That's as many wins as Aus had in the two series combined, and the two Aus wins were not achieved by any kind of spin success- they didn't pick a spinner at all in their 2009 win in the 4th test (and made the mistake of repeating that selection at the Oval, where spin was key) and Perth 2010/11, where Johnson and Harris took almost all the wickets between them.

    Swann's not Warne (who is or has ever been?), but give him a wicket that turns and he's very effective, especially against LHBs. Cowan, Rogers, Hughes, Warner, Khawaja- what do they all have in common? You got it- LHBs.

  • POSTED BY landl47 on | June 30, 2013, 13:44 GMT

    If the pitches in England allow some turn this year, and the signs are they will, Hughes is going to be tested by Swann. Batting against the SLA of Dockrell, promising but still a very inexperienced bowler, and playing the offspin of Swann on a turning pitch are two entirely different things. He's also going to find that Anderson, Broad and Finn are a different proposition from Meschede and Trego. If the ball swings, Anderson taking it across him to the slips is going to play on his biggest weakness.

    I've said before that I think Hughes has the talent to succeed. He does need to tighten up his technique. Lehmann had 10 years to do that before he played test cricket. Hughes hasn't been given that chance. If he fails this time, it's as much because he hasn't been managed properly as his own shortcomings.

  • POSTED BY RandyOZ on | June 30, 2013, 11:37 GMT

    Hughes has the potential to be one of the greats of the game. I really hope this is his break out series.

  • POSTED BY on | June 30, 2013, 11:37 GMT

    "The answers, my friends, are blowing in the wind"

    The talent is there, they can all bat. Even the best batsmen have had their techniques endlessly examined (ie Steve Waugh and bouncers).

    But it will probably be their mental capacity in tight situations that will decide the issue.

  • POSTED BY it_happened_last_in_2001. on | June 30, 2013, 11:32 GMT

    Hughes is the type of player that just seems unable to bat for any length of time against good bowling. Either a rush of blood or lapse in concentration always seems to do for him. He just doesn't give the impression that he could be not out at lunch and make it to the tea break unbeaten. Cook, Trott, Root (not KP) & Bell know how to build an innings and bat time. With others in the Aus squad like Warner, Watson, Khawaja & to a lesser degree Cowan also prone to lapses, it seems like the captain & vice captain are gonna have a lot to do. Look out for the much lauded Aussie fast bowling machine being on their knees by the end of the Lords test because their batters can't bat enough time for them to rest up.

  • POSTED BY ScottStevo on | June 30, 2013, 11:08 GMT

    @Dangertroy & @Barnsey4444, Agreed. Hughes may have a few issues with his technique, but the amount of FC runs he scores against others in shield cricket seems to me that he's capable. We've seen he is when he tore into the SA attack. At his age, he's worth persisting with. A lot of players didn't cut it their first time around, players like Hayden.also, I don't think it was Hughes' decision not to be played against SA - although, after the way he'd dealt with them previously, I'm not sure who was being saved! Rob Quiney??? Seriously...Also, Swann has a pretty ordinary record against Australia, as much as he's talked up, he's not really made that much impact. In fact, Panesar did more in 09 just by being a nuisance for 10 overs...

  • POSTED BY R_U_4_REAL_NICK on | June 30, 2013, 10:12 GMT

    @Mary_786 (post on June 30, 2013, 9:40 GMT): Rogers is 35... Whilst I agree bringing him in is the correct choice, it's hardly "being behind younger players"...

  • POSTED BY Mary_786 on | June 30, 2013, 9:40 GMT

    Popcorn and Ozwriter its true Hughes is not good under pressure but i want to get behind our young players. If he fails this tour then thats the end for him as its his 4th chance at this level. But i really think the likes of Khawaja and Rogers and to a lesser extend Hughes will have good series

  • POSTED BY Dangertroy on | June 30, 2013, 9:31 GMT

    @popcorn - Hughes has been dropped twice. Once caught Guptill bowled Martin, which was deserved, and once in England, for which he was unfortunate. He had one bad match, and was dropped essentially to strengthen the bowling, bringing in Watson rather than dropping Johnson. Quiney was unlucky to only get two matches but after 9 sparkling runs and a pair, he had sort of made his own bed. He was definitely a pinch-hitter, he wouldn't have been there if Watson was fit. Hughes is young, and raw. His technique isn't pretty, but has reaped 7,500 first class runs by the age of 24. He needs a bit of freedom to play his natural game rather than constant speculation about his place. The whole team does really. It's not like these guys are holding back players making a thousand runs a season and beating the door down. Pressure should be coming from players looking to force their way in, not fans speculating from the sidelines.

  • POSTED BY ozwriter on | June 30, 2013, 8:34 GMT

    @popcorn, well said. relegate to ODI cricket only.

  • POSTED BY popcorn on | June 30, 2013, 8:01 GMT

    I cannot understand this OBSESSION To include Phil Hughes in the Test Team after dumping him three times for failures. There are far better batsmen with excellent technique suited to Test Cricket."Boof", under your very nose are Usman Khawaja and Chris Rogers. Plenty more in the State Teams. Rob Quiney dumped after....? Tests? No return? If Darren Lehmann,left handed batsman thinks his stance of exposing his leg stump is the way to go for Phil Hughes, here's another failkure coming.Boof was the ONLY left -handed batsman I know who could get bowled off his leg stump. Sic.I ALWAYS have my heart in my mouth when Phil Hughes goes out to bat in Test Cricket. Like Michael Bevan, he should be relegated to ODIs ONLY.

  • POSTED BY Barnesy4444 on | June 30, 2013, 7:59 GMT

    Hughes has scored more FC centuries than Boof at age 24. Hughes' test record is similar to Punter and Clarke at similar stages. Hughes will have an excellent career, he is by far the best young batsman in Australia right now and worth persisting with. He will prove a lot of people wrong.

  • POSTED BY Moppa on | June 30, 2013, 7:51 GMT

    @UbiquitousWALL, I assume you are talking about Shane Watson, not Michael Clarke. Because it would be ridiculous to say that Clarke doesn't play 50% of the time, seeing as he's missed one Test in about seven years. Or maybe you just don't know what you are talking about.

  • POSTED BY xylo on | June 30, 2013, 7:38 GMT

    yeah, speak to the coach, and all problems against spin are solved. i heard that the diplomats of India and Pakistan are going to speak to each other. i expect both countries to unify, maybe not as quickly as Hughes is going to face Swann, but in a month at the most. Fair enough?

  • POSTED BY mikey76 on | June 30, 2013, 7:07 GMT

    He better get to spin school fast, otherwise Swann will have him on toast this series. Can't help feeling Australia are playing into our hands by picking all these lefties. Swann and Anderson both love left handers. Will be interesting to see how they fare against Worcestershire, they might strangely enough be more of a test than a losing Somerset side. The New road track should offer more than Taunton.

  • POSTED BY Ozcricketwriter on | June 30, 2013, 7:03 GMT

    Don't forget that not only did Hughes fail in England (average 19) but also in Australia against England (average 15). Going by that progression, he will average 11 in this test series.

  • POSTED BY vj_gooner on | June 30, 2013, 7:02 GMT

    The current bunch needn't look anywhere else for inspiration! They should look at the Australia in Sri Lanka test series in March 2004.

    Oz trailed on first innings in each match but went on to win the series 3-0 and most importantly Lehmann played a vital role in that series win. He was simply at his best!

  • POSTED BY ozwriter on | June 30, 2013, 6:43 GMT

    hughes is very lucky to be in the test squad. that he got shielded against south africa's attack so he could feast on sri lankas is a testament to his inability under pressure and against quality opposition

  • POSTED BY Paul_Rampley on | June 30, 2013, 5:11 GMT

    This is only the start, boof will do wonders for the likes of Hughes and Khawaja, 2 guys who can be the backbone of our batting order for years to come.

  • POSTED BY on | June 30, 2013, 5:01 GMT

    I have often wondered how Boof would have batted against Swann so Hughes may show us. He would bat well outside the leg stump against Murili to avoid LBW which is Swanns greatest weapon.

  • POSTED BY Rahul_78 on | June 30, 2013, 4:41 GMT

    May be the memories of his struggle or to say hopelessness in India against spin is fresh in the memory but I am sure Swann will be quietly pleased at the prospect of bowling against Hughes in the coming matches. Leehman will be taking a big punt on Hughes if he decides to bat him in the middle order. What we have seen in Champions trophy is dry English pitches which are turning square. Being a left hander, a nervous starter and proven struggler against quality off spin Hughes will be up against it against the worlds best off spinner. It is going to be a fascinating viewing. Just from a neutral point of view though I would l like to see Hughes and other Ausie batsmen score some runs so that we can have some close matches on our hand.

  • POSTED BY jonesy2 on | June 30, 2013, 4:31 GMT

    i think hughes should score runs against this weak England bowling unit. all the Australians should score runs against the weak England bowling unit actually and Australia's bowling will take care of the rest you would think

  • POSTED BY GeoffreysMother on | June 30, 2013, 4:31 GMT

    The only differences are that Lehman was superb at Yorkshire and Hughes mediocre at best at Worcester. A few runs at Taunton against a very mediocre bowling line does not mean problem solved - it means Australia have yet to face a meaningful bowling attack ( and they won't at Worcester). They will, surprise,surprise face one at Trent Bridge: best save new dawns till then.

  • POSTED BY UbiquitousWALL on | June 30, 2013, 3:39 GMT

    I fail to understand how someone who is almost always ill still being persisted with as Captain.. He is the cancer that has robbed Australian Cricket of its vigor. No doubting his ability, but of what use is it if he's not playing 50% of the time. Its time that Australia started looking at someone else to lead the side!

  • POSTED BY Ozcricketwriter on | June 30, 2013, 3:39 GMT

    Bad news for Australia is that Phil Hughes is "in form". He will probably play the first test, and, with 2 half centuries, may even play the second even after he fails in the first. Somerset deliberately let him score some runs, I think, just to make sure that he is in the test XI. There is absolutely no way that Phil Hughes should be anything close to making the test side.

  • POSTED BY Mary_786 on | June 30, 2013, 3:37 GMT

    The thing i like most about boof is that he is instilling confidence in our younger bats. Hughes and Khawaja both look more confident, Khawaja top scored yesterday and Hughes in the first innings got a not out. Khawaja seems like the a great number 3 option to us going forward and Hughes at 5. Watson is also responding well and this is something Arthur was just not getting, our batting was never worse then under him. Lehman with all his playing experience and being a leftie is invaluable for all the left handers in our side.

  • POSTED BY Sunil_Batra on | June 30, 2013, 3:33 GMT

    Hughes did enough to warrant a spot in the first test along with Khawaja and Watson, all 3 of whom made runs this game. I am almost certain now that we may go with Watson, Rogers, Khawaja, Clarke, Hughes for the top 5 but not sure who will come in at 6, either Warner or Cowan depending on how Cowan bats as he needs to start converting.

  • POSTED BY Sunil_Batra on | June 30, 2013, 3:33 GMT

    Hughes did enough to warrant a spot in the first test along with Khawaja and Watson, all 3 of whom made runs this game. I am almost certain now that we may go with Watson, Rogers, Khawaja, Clarke, Hughes for the top 5 but not sure who will come in at 6, either Warner or Cowan depending on how Cowan bats as he needs to start converting.

  • POSTED BY Mary_786 on | June 30, 2013, 3:37 GMT

    The thing i like most about boof is that he is instilling confidence in our younger bats. Hughes and Khawaja both look more confident, Khawaja top scored yesterday and Hughes in the first innings got a not out. Khawaja seems like the a great number 3 option to us going forward and Hughes at 5. Watson is also responding well and this is something Arthur was just not getting, our batting was never worse then under him. Lehman with all his playing experience and being a leftie is invaluable for all the left handers in our side.

  • POSTED BY Ozcricketwriter on | June 30, 2013, 3:39 GMT

    Bad news for Australia is that Phil Hughes is "in form". He will probably play the first test, and, with 2 half centuries, may even play the second even after he fails in the first. Somerset deliberately let him score some runs, I think, just to make sure that he is in the test XI. There is absolutely no way that Phil Hughes should be anything close to making the test side.

  • POSTED BY UbiquitousWALL on | June 30, 2013, 3:39 GMT

    I fail to understand how someone who is almost always ill still being persisted with as Captain.. He is the cancer that has robbed Australian Cricket of its vigor. No doubting his ability, but of what use is it if he's not playing 50% of the time. Its time that Australia started looking at someone else to lead the side!

  • POSTED BY GeoffreysMother on | June 30, 2013, 4:31 GMT

    The only differences are that Lehman was superb at Yorkshire and Hughes mediocre at best at Worcester. A few runs at Taunton against a very mediocre bowling line does not mean problem solved - it means Australia have yet to face a meaningful bowling attack ( and they won't at Worcester). They will, surprise,surprise face one at Trent Bridge: best save new dawns till then.

  • POSTED BY jonesy2 on | June 30, 2013, 4:31 GMT

    i think hughes should score runs against this weak England bowling unit. all the Australians should score runs against the weak England bowling unit actually and Australia's bowling will take care of the rest you would think

  • POSTED BY Rahul_78 on | June 30, 2013, 4:41 GMT

    May be the memories of his struggle or to say hopelessness in India against spin is fresh in the memory but I am sure Swann will be quietly pleased at the prospect of bowling against Hughes in the coming matches. Leehman will be taking a big punt on Hughes if he decides to bat him in the middle order. What we have seen in Champions trophy is dry English pitches which are turning square. Being a left hander, a nervous starter and proven struggler against quality off spin Hughes will be up against it against the worlds best off spinner. It is going to be a fascinating viewing. Just from a neutral point of view though I would l like to see Hughes and other Ausie batsmen score some runs so that we can have some close matches on our hand.

  • POSTED BY on | June 30, 2013, 5:01 GMT

    I have often wondered how Boof would have batted against Swann so Hughes may show us. He would bat well outside the leg stump against Murili to avoid LBW which is Swanns greatest weapon.

  • POSTED BY Paul_Rampley on | June 30, 2013, 5:11 GMT

    This is only the start, boof will do wonders for the likes of Hughes and Khawaja, 2 guys who can be the backbone of our batting order for years to come.

  • POSTED BY ozwriter on | June 30, 2013, 6:43 GMT

    hughes is very lucky to be in the test squad. that he got shielded against south africa's attack so he could feast on sri lankas is a testament to his inability under pressure and against quality opposition