Coach Andrew McDonald says that the way Australia did in the subcontinent during the last WTC run was a big part of their success. After Australia beat India in the WTC Final, McDonald talked about how great it was that his team had won Test matches in Pakistan, Sri Lanka, and India.
Australia won the third and final Test of their memorable tour of Pakistan last year. The first two Tests ended in a tie. After Australia won that series, they went to Sri Lanka and won a Test match before drawing that series 1-1. They kept the series going in India earlier this year by winning the third Test, which also put them in the final.
“You can string together series on their own, or you can talk about our trip from Pakistan to Sri Lanka to India on the subcontinent,” he said. “We had to figure out what to do. So, the World Test championship run was hard. So, I think we got here because we won in the subcontinent. Australia is a very strong country. So I think most people would expect us to win Test matches in Australia, but being able to do well in Pakistan, win a Test match in Sri Lanka, and then win in Indore to secure a spot in the final was crucial to giving us this chance. And we were able to do that, so we did a good job.”
When asked how this victory compares to the many other awards Australia has won over the years, McDonald said that Australia is just getting used to the idea of the WTC because they missed the first final in 2021. “That’s a new idea,” he said. “But we’re definitely on board with the idea, and I think that’s what made us sad the first couple of years it was around: we missed out because of the over-rate, so we’ve made it a big part of what we do.
“Every time we go into a game, we check in to see where we stand. There’s a ladder, but it’s spread out over two years, which is a little different from other sports, but it’s a big deal. You put being here and winning at the top of your list of priorities, and that’s what we’ve been able to do. So it’s pretty high up. And if you go into that changing room right now, you’ll see a lot of happy people thinking about how far they’ve come in the last few years.
Since Australia’s program is already full and the Ashes season starts in five days, the celebrations will have to be put on hold. “Probably in the next 24 hours, we’ll switch our attention to the Ashes and the first Test, just as you do,” he said. “We can’t wait until it happens. First, there was the end of the World Test Championship. Let’s celebrate what the team has been able to do in the last few years, and then we can get excited about Edgbaston ball one.
“So, one thing we have to think about when it comes to England is how to keep them from having those borders. So there are a few things we might be able to clean up and use in the next game, but against a different team. So, we’ll have to go back to the drawing board.”
After Scott Boland’s strong efforts, it will be hard for Australia to decide who to put in the team for the first Test against England. Mitchell Starc’s spot could be in question now that Josh Hazlewood is about to come back, especially since the left-arm seamer gave up a lot of runs in the WTC Final. McDonald, however, supported his strike bowler.
“India sometimes tried hard, and the game went at a high rate of three or four runs per over,” he said. “Mitch went a little more than that sometimes, and he usually goes a little faster than the other bowlers, but they work really well together.” He is the best at getting wickets than anyone else. We have to think about all of that when we decide what to do. But it’s not a problem because we know that the grounds and surfaces will make rpo a little bit higher in the summer.
“We respect Mitch and what he’s been able to do, but we also respect Scott and Josh. Patty (Cummins) is an easy pick as captain, and you also have Nathan Lyon and Cameron Green. We feel like we have good support, and if anything goes wrong, we have people here who play county cricket.