Siddle chases enhanced reputation

Peter Siddle gave Australia an early breakthrough when he removed Alastair Cook Getty Images

Peter Siddle and his fresh fast-bowling team-mates want to develop their standing and become a fearsome unit to rival the great combinations of Australia's past. The trio, which also includes Mitchell Johnson and Ben Hilfenhaus, starred in South Africa, where they won the series in March, but were unable to repeat their performances during the 2-1 Ashes defeat.

Despite their role in the loss, they remain the preferred line-up and will run into the West Indies from Thursday in the first Test at the Gabba. It is there that the side intends to hit back following the setback in England, which reduced them to fourth in the world rankings, and Siddle is keen to build on a new era for the attack.

"Growing up, Australian cricket was always strong and a force to be reckoned with," he said. "We want to try and forge something of our own, become quality players who can hold Australia in good stead for the next five, ten years or whatever, when we are going to be around the team."

Siddle, 24, played the first of his 12 Tests in India last year and Hilfenhaus, 26, joined the team in South Africa, taking 29 wickets in the next eight games. Johnson, who is 28, remains the attack leader despite his troubles in England and has been a key member of the set-up since he was 12th man throughout the 2006-07 Ashes series.

"We have almost a good year together, the three of us," Siddle said. "We are starting to get used to how each other plays, what our roles are in the team. We are all close mates and at similar ages and we are all disappointed with the Ashes and how we finished up there. We want to start off well here and perform well and have a good series."

A foot injury to Brett Lee at the start of the year allowed the trio to come together and his most recent elbow problem means Doug Bollinger, the left-arm fast man from New South Wales, is the only one capable of splitting them up this week. Given the selectors' faith in them that appears highly unlikely.

Siddle returned early from the one-day series in India with a side strain and, like Hilfenhaus and Johnson, will enter the opening Test without a first-class warm-up. The selectors preferred them to rest following a gruelling schedule and Siddle is not concerned.

"I have played that much cricket now that I know what I have to do to prepare for each match and what I have to do to get ready," he said. "I feel comfortable with where I am right now and am looking forward to a big summer."