Pace bowler Peter Siddle has pinpointed recently recalled batsman Phillip Hughes as the key weapon in Australia’s Test series against India starting later this month.
“If we look at Phillip Hughes, the form he’s had since he came back into the Australian side… he showed he’d changed his game for the best,” Siddle said on Thursday.
“His form in the one-dayers has been outstanding.
“If he can translate that over to the Indian conditions, which will be a little bit different, he’s the one.
“If he can get going and support Pup (Michael Clarke) and Davy (David Warner) and Watto (Shane Watson) we can get those big totals.”
While admitting getting wickets through pace will be hard on the dry and spin-friendly Indian pitches, Siddle said the team needed to stick with what had produced results in the past.
“The way we’ve won Test matches for years now has been with our pace,” Siddle said.
“That’s going to play a big role but (off-spinner) Nate (Lyon) is probably going to play a big role at the other end and I think that’s where his game will flourish even more.
“He’ll get a lot of assistance over there so I think combined the line-up will do well.”
Siddle said the side had a basic plan but patience would be emphasised as a key factor.
“We have to bowl as straight as we can and be as patient as we can be,” he said.
“It’s always been the case, even for a spinner – still patience. Indian wickets are hard work, the games go a little bit slower because the wickets are hard to score on.”
Siddle said the Australians would be wary of veteran star Sachin Tendulkar despite his decision to wind back his on-field commitments.
“He’s finished up one day cricket and Twenty20 to concentrate on tests so he’ll be looking to come out hard,” Siddle said.
“The last series over here we got on top of him a bit but he’ll be looking to fire back.
“He’s going to be a tough contest but hopefully one we can get early enough more times than not.”
Siddle said the Australians had a point to prove in the difficult conditions over the four-Test series, which starts in Chennai on February 22.
“I think so,” Siddle said. “You look back on the years gone by and the series results we’ve had over there – it has been hard work for us.
“It’s been a tough stomping ground so I guess this is a time with a new-look team and hopefully we can go over there and stamp our authority and go from ball one and get stuck in.”