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Bailey happy with options at his disposal

Australia is keen to win the World T20, but “no more desperate than any other side”, says its captain

Bailey happy with options at his disposal - Cricket News
“I don’t know if it is our best side but I am certainly comfortable with it and with the balance,” said Bailey.
The only trophy missing from Australia’s bulging cricketing cupboard is the ICC World Twenty20. The multiple World Cup and Champions Trophy winner has made the final of the World T20 only once in four previous attempts, but George Bailey said the team was no more desperate for this trophy than it has been for any other trophy.
“We are very keen to win it. Given Australia’s history of World Cups and what not, it is something we would like to rectify in terms of winning it,” said Australia’s T20 captain on Tuesday (March 18). “We are no more desperate than any other World Cup, and we are no more desperate than any other side that is here, I would imagine. We’d love to win it. Like any World Cup, it is really challenging to win and there is a part of the tournament, which becomes a knockout. In terms of desperateness, I think the fact that it is a World Cup is motivation enough.”
Bailey put a lack of consistency throughout the tournament as the primary reason for Australia not having won this event previously. “Just to play close to our best and to be consistent, any team will want that. That is a challenge,” he said. “The hardest thing in T20 is to be consistent. If you look at the series that go around the year, a lot of them are drawn, sides tend to win one and lose one. It is hard to put a gap on a team.”
Australia is paired in a tough Group 2, which includes India, Pakistan and West Indies, all previous winners, and a qualifier that is most likely to be Bangladesh. “It is a very challenging group, no doubt about that,” admitted Bailey. “Certainly, the way we are looking at it is that if we progress through the group, we are playing some very good T20 cricket.”
Australia was dealt a major blow when Mitchell Johnson, the unquestioned star in its series victories at home against England and in South Africa in the last three months, was ruled out with a toe injury. “We will miss Mitch, no doubt about that. Looking at his form over the last six months, he has been absolutely unbelievable for us,” acknowledged Bailey. “The last time he was in the subcontinent in the one-day series against India, he was really good too. No doubt we will miss him. Having said that, Doug Bollinger as a replacement, we are really lucky. Doug has some good T20 pedigree and he bowls fast and can swing the ball. All these things can be handy over here.”
Given the batting resources with Aaron Finch, David Warner and Shane Watson cramming the top, Bailey himself, Glenn Maxwell and Brad Hodge providing muscle in the middle, and the array of pace riches, there is a temptation to call this the best Australian side ever at a World T20. “I don’t know if it is our best side but I am certainly comfortable with it and with the balance,” said Bailey. “As far as balance goes, it is a team that gives as a lot of options in terms of bowling and batting. We will find out over the next few weeks. I am really happy with our pace battery. The important thing in subcontinent conditions is to really have pace or have guys who swing the ball. With the addition of Doug along with Mitchell Starc and Nathan Coulter-Nile, we have three guys who bowl at really good pace and can all swing the ball. The other thing is you have to finish it off at the other end too. All these guys have got really good skills at the death.”
Australia’s spin attack might appear a little light with Brad Hogg, at 43, the leader of the pack, but Bailey chose to offer a different spin altogether. “I think we have all bases covered. Brad Hogg, as far as a left-arm legspinners go, he does something different. There are not many of them going around. Guys must have not seen much, and I guess he has been around for 30 years. James Muirhead is an exciting young spinner for us. I like the option of having legspinners in the side because they are match-winners and wicket-takers. They force batsmen to do something different,” offered Bailey.
“We have a lot of part-time spinners and back-up spinners. Having said that, Glenn Maxwell has done a really good job for us in T20 bowling. He is no longer a part-time spinner for us. Aaron Finch bowls a little bit of left-arm spin, Cameron White legspin, Brad Hodge offspin, so we have got plenty of options there.”
Bailey agreed that the conditions, with the pitches slowing up and assisting the spinners, would mean the Asian sides had an advantage. “I would imagine so. I am not selling any of the Western countries short but I think it is just the nature,” he pointed out. “I would expect Australia and New Zealand to be more favourites in the 50-over World Cup coming up. There is a comfort there and knowledge that will take the other teams a little getting used to. Having said that, the teams have played a lot in India and I don’t think the conditions will be too much different.”

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