Cook will win his 100th Test cap on Friday, as will his opposite number Michael Clarke, in a match the two chief protagonists could hardly be approaching in more contrasting circumstances.
Prior does not under-estimate the challenge facing England, after their hapless false start to this high-profile series, but he is convinced they can fight
back. “For an England cricketer, it doesn’t get any harder — two down in an Ashes series coming to Perth,” he admitted.
“(But) if we do come out and force a result here, how exciting would that be ... in the England dressing room at the end of this game, getting a result in Perth to get back into this series?
“That’s what we have to concentrate on and work towards, and that’s exactly what we’re focusing on.” He is well aware, in England’s perilous position, empty words will be worthless without the right actions to back them up in the middle.
“It’s all well and good me sitting here talking and going on about fight and hunger and everything,” he said.
“The only way we’re going to show fight and hunger is out on that cricket pitch, performing and getting results — batsmen getting big hundreds, bowlers taking wickets and fielders diving on every ball.”