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Carey Hopes Steve Waugh’s Presence Helps Transition to Red-ball Cricket

Cricketnext Staff |July 21, 2019, 10:43 AM IST
Carey Hopes Steve Waugh’s Presence Helps Transition to Red-ball Cricket

Australian wicket-keeper Alex Carey, who was among the standout performers at the 2019 ICC World Cup with 375 runs and 20 dismissals from 10 games, welcomed the chance to work with Steve Waugh ahead of the 2019 Ashes.

With Waugh, who has won eight Ashes series, now mentoring the team in the early part of their Ashes campaign, Carey is making use of his availability to transition effectively into red-ball cricket.

"Having Steve is amazing for the group. I think he's won nine [eight] Ashes [series as player] and been over here [England] and played a lot. To have the knowledge of Steve Waugh, one of the greatest Australian cricketers, be a part of this group is something we're really lucky to have," Carey said after a practice session.

"Personally, I just had a quick chat just getting to know Steve. It's quite early and he'll mentor us and have his spin on things. It's just great knowledge to have. Steve's been watching the one-day stuff and commentating a bit there. I've had a few little chats with him, but more moving now into the red ball and getting that focus of a longer format.

"The patience of the game, staying focused for longer, little things that will come out over the next few days. The more we train, the more you start talking, you start asking questions."

Carey best performances at the World Cup came in pressure situations. Against the West Indies, he helped rebuild the innings with a 68-run partnership with Steve Smith, before hammering an unbeaten 35-ball 55 against India. Virat Kohli and co comfortably beat Australia, but the ease with which Carey played in high pressure was noticeable.

His 71 against New Zealand was integral to lifting Australia from 92/5 to 243/9, which they eventually defended by 86 runs. Even in Australia’s last game in the round-robin, against South Africa, he nearly helped them chase down 326 with a superb 85 off 69 balls.

Every time, no matter the pressure Carey kept his calm and displayed the ability to play his natural game.

"I guess different circumstances throughout the World Cup were really good learning experiences for me," Carey said. "Having Smith and Warner back in the side, and the experienced guys I got to bat with, you learn a lot out in the middle.

"Obviously, batting [at] seven, you hope to come in during the last 10, and if you don't, then you do your best through the middle to be busy, occupy the crease. At times, it felt just like play good cricket, and play a bit of Test cricket - absorb some pressure and rebuild at times. It was good to go through different circumstances and have some success.

"The last six to eight weeks have been a massive learning experience for me and then going back 12 months even. Every time I go out to play, I try to learn as much as I can from success or failures, learn from the experienced guys in the team, and once you get put under pressure, you learn a lot about yourself pretty quickly as well.”

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2 India 6939 122
3 New Zealand 4837 112
4 Australia 5543 111
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