Boof ponders fast bowler dilemma

16 June 2015
Australia's bowlers did a good job in the West Indies // Getty Images

Australia's bowlers did well in the West Indies // Getty Images

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Darren Lehmann writes about the very good problem selectors have with the Australian quicks

We've had a fantastic few weeks here in the Caribbean and to retain the Frank Worrell Trophy in the way we did was extremely satisfying, especially because it was away from home.

We were really pleased with the performance of our batters in the second Test and the bowlers were outstanding all tour, particularly our man-of-the-series Josh Hazlewood.

The form of Josh, Mitchell Starc and Mitchell Johnson and also having Ryan Harris and Peter Siddle in the squad obviously makes things interesting for us as we head to the UK for the Ashes.

Those guys have given us a massive headache - albeit a good one - and we have a really tough decision to make when it comes to picking the side for the first Test in Cardiff.

Two of those five guys are going to be unbelievably unlucky to miss out, but that's what happens when you're playing good cricket. You have to make those hard decisions.

We just have to pick the right three fast bowlers to take the 20 wickets in that first Test. And that's not to say we'll play those three all series, but we'll just pick the XI for that match and go from there.

The two tour matches leading into the series will play a big part in our thinking. We need to see how the bowlers pull up and how they bowl in the different conditions, on different pitches and with the different ball.

Related: Boof wants more from Warner, Watson

Bupa Support Team Head Coach Darren Lehmann is rapt with the bowling attack but says David Warner and Shane Watson need to find some pre-Ashes runs

It's been two years since our last Ashes tour and there's a big change in mindset for me personally and the team compared to when were there in 2013.

Obviously with me coming into the role a few weeks before the series started two years ago, it was a case of swapping over really quickly and chopping and changing how we wanted to do things. But now we're far more settled with how we want to go about it.

The guys are definitely in a better space than they were two years ago. We're really close as a team and we know what we've got to do on and off the ground to achieve our goals. Once we get on the plane it's all about the Ashes.

There's no hiding from the fact that our record in England over the past 15 years or so hasn't been good. We've won just two Tests from 15 over there since we won the series in 2001, which was the last time we held the urn aloft on English soil.

We lost 3-0 there two years ago, but I think we made some big strides in that series and I think it was a lot closer than the scoreline suggested.

England win the Ashes

And just like playing anywhere in the world, the key to reversing the trend is winning the big moments. In 2013 we had chances to win Test matches and weather played a part as well, as it does in England.

We're not far off but we know we have to raise the bar to win over there. We haven't done it for 14 years and that's our goal. We want to keep winning away from home and while we get a big tick for winning in the West Indies, we will have to play some really good cricket to retain the urn.

Obviously we had great success in our last series against England when we won 5-0 in Australia, but that was 18 months ago.

Australia win the Ashes

We just have to concentrate on what we're doing now, not focus on the past and live in the present. If we do that and play the way we know we can play, hopefully we can create some new memories.

Recap and highlights: Australia make it a 2-0 sweep

There's been some talk about where the West Indies are at following the results in this series and while they'd be disappointed, they have a lot of upside.

They're an inexperienced side and they just have to stick with it and keep working with those young guys because they have some great young talent, especially in their fast bowling stocks where the Windies have always been traditionally strong.

They've also got some great past players involved in Phil Simmons, Clive Lloyd, Richie Richardson and Curtly Ambrose. Those guys care so much about the West Indies and while the way they are trying to go is going to be a tough road, but it's the right road for them to take.

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