Strauss 'quietly confident' about victory in Australia

Andrew Strauss believes an Ashes series victory in Australia could provide the career highlight for each of England's tourists. The England captain said yesterday that his squad were more excited than nervous as they counted down to their departure for the winter series.

"We've really been targeting this series because an Ashes win in Australia can be a defining moment in your career," he said. "You never know how it's going to play out there, how difficult or easy it might be, but what you've got to do is be as prepared as possible, be prepared for anything.

"When you're there, there's a lot of off-field things to deal with, being away from home for a long time, but if you deal with that well, it gives you a good chance of playing well on the field."

After another positive summer, Strauss feels England are well set for the trip. "We're in a good place as a side," he said. "We've made a lot of improvement over the last 18 months or so. We're aware it's a tough assignment going to Australia and winning, very tough, but we're in a good place to do it. We're quietly confident we can do it without being over-the-top arrogant.

"We need to play well out there, we need to be consistent and in the really crucial sessions we need to make sure we play well. But we're really excited and just ticking down the hours now."

Australia, on tour in India, have suffered a 2-0 series loss but Strauss is not placing too much store by that. "The conditions in India are so different," he said. "They've obviously lost a few Tests and have a few questions they need to iron out and that might preoccupy them where we don't have that. But we know from past experience that as soon as you arrive in Australia, from day one things get pretty tough. They're a proud side, their record in Australia is outstanding and we're expecting them to be at their best this winter so if we want to beat them we have to be better than that."

Strauss also backed the under-pressure Kevin Pietersen to shine. He said: "The question marks over his form will remain until he gets a big score, but all of us who have been through bad form know it only takes one innings and things are right again. When you're talking about a player of KP's class, it will happen. He will have an impact on the series, no doubt. These series bring the best out of him."

Pakistan have called up Shahzaib Hasan and Wahab Riaz to their one-day and Twenty20 squads for the series against South Africa. Batsman Hasan, 20, and 25-year-old pace bowler Riaz have been rewarded for excellent performances in Pakistan's domestic Twenty20 competition. Riaz took 10 wickets to help Lahore claim the Faysal Bank t20 title last week, while Hasan was the highest runscorer with 281 from four matches.

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Isis in Syria: A general reveals the lack of communication with the US - and his country's awkward relationship with their allies-by-default

A Syrian general speaks

A senior officer of Bashar al-Assad’s regime talks to Robert Fisk about his army’s brutal struggle with Isis, in a dirty war whose challenges include widespread atrocities
‘A bit of a shock...’ Cambridge economist with Glasgow roots becomes Zambia’s acting President

‘A bit of a shock...’ Economist with Glasgow roots becomes Zambia’s acting President

Guy Scott's predecessor, Michael Sata, died in a London hospital this week after a lengthy illness
Fall of the Berlin Wall: History catches up with Erich Honecker - the East German leader who praised the Iron Curtain and claimed it prevented a Third World War

Fall of the Berlin Wall

History catches up with Erich Honecker - the East German leader who praised the Iron Curtain and claimed it prevented a Third World War
How to turn your mobile phone into easy money

Turn your mobile phone into easy money

There are 90 million unused mobiles in the UK, which would be worth £7bn if we cashed them in, says David Crookes
Independent writers remember their Saturday jobs:

Independent writers remember their Saturday jobs

"I have never regarded anything I have done in "the media" as a proper job"
Lyricist Richard Thomas shares his 11-step recipe for creating a hit West End musical

11-step recipe for creating a West End hit

Richard Thomas, the lyricist behind the Jerry Springer and Anna Nicole Smith operas, explains how Bob Dylan, 'Breaking Bad' and even Noam Chomsky inspired his songbook for the new musical 'Made in Dagenham'
Tonke Dragt's The Letter for the King has finally been translated into English ... 50 years on

Buried treasure: The Letter for the King

The coming-of-age tale about a boy and his mission to save a mythical kingdom has sold a million copies since it was written by an eccentric Dutchwoman in 1962. Yet until last year, no one had read it in English
Can instilling a sense of entrepreneurship in pupils have a positive effect on their learning?

The school that means business

Richard Garner heads to Lancashire, where developing the 'dragons' of the future is also helping one community academy to achieve its educational goals
10 best tablets

The world in your pocket: 10 best tablets

They’re thin, they’re light, you can use them for work on the move or keeping entertained
Lutz Pfannenstiel: The goalkeeper who gave up Bayern Munich for the Crazy Gang, Bradford and a whirlwind trawl across continents

Lutz Pfannenstiel interview

The goalkeeper who gave up Bayern Munich for the Crazy Gang, Bradford and a whirlwind trawl across continents
Pete Jenson: Popular Jürgen Klopp can reignite Borussia Dortmund’s season with visit to Bayern Munich

Pete Jenson's a Different League

Popular Klopp can reignite Dortmund’s season with visit to Bayern
John Cantlie video proves that Isis expects victory in Kobani

Cantlie video proves that Isis expects victory in Kobani

The use of the British hostage demonstrates once again the militants' skill and originality in conducting a propaganda war, says Patrick Cockburn
The killer instinct: The man who helps students spot potential murderers

The killer instinct

Phil Chalmers travels the US warning students how to spot possible future murderers, but can his contentious methods really stop the bloodshed?
Clothing the gap: A new exhibition celebrates women who stood apart from the fashion herd

Clothing the gap

A new exhibition celebrates women who stood apart from the fashion herd
Fall of the Berlin Wall: Goodbye to all that - the lost world beyond the Iron Curtain

The Fall of the Berlin Wall

Goodbye to all that - the lost world beyond the Iron Curtain