Former Australia opener Graeme Wood has said that four quicks would be the way to go for Michael Clarke's side in the third Test match against India starting here on Friday.
Pacer Mitchell Starc, who will replace the injured James Pattinson for the
Third Test. Pic/Getty Images
Wood, who struck a century against India at Adelaide in 1980-81, was also a member of Kim Hughes' side that toured India in 1979-80. He played in six Tests at the Western Australia Cricket Association Ground (WACA) -- and knows a thing or two about the difficulty an opening batsman faces here.
"Sunil Gavaskar once said to me 'you are crazy if you bat in the top three at WACA'. That always stuck in my mind," the outgoing WACA CEO told reporters yesterday.
"But, the great thing about Perth is the true bounce. You watch someone like Mike Hussey -- how he lets the ball go. He knows where his off-stump is. Players who haven't played here will poke at the ball outside off-stump. If you are sure of the bounce, it's a great wicket to bat on. It gets better as the days go. I certainly know something about that," Wood said.
When asked if the best ploy to tame a good attack at WACA Ground was by counter-attacking, Wood joked: "With regards to my career, timing was everything. I played against West Indies here at the WACA. Would have I dared counter-attacked?"
Wood felt that Australia's lone success during the Ashes series last year will prompt a similar selection this week. "(The West Indies) always used to play the four quicks here which helped them continue to keep the pressure up. I think you will see Australia thinking about that -- they did it last year in the Ashes Test match.
Last year, it was an outstanding cricket wicket. We are hoping to get the same. There will be good bounce, and some sideways movement in the first few days.
"I would be surprised if they did not go for a four-pronged pace attack for this Test match," he said. Wood felt that it'd be ideal stage for Sachin Tendulkar to get his hundredth international ton.
"When he got out for 80 in Sydney, I wasn't all that upset (laughs). But, in all seriousness, he made that 100 in 1992 when he was just 18. We all marveled at his genius. It'd be a great thing for Indian cricket if he gets it here," he said.