James Pattinson replaces injured Peter Siddle for second Test against New Zealand
Siddle has been ruled out of the second Test with a back injury which he picked up while playing in the first Test whereas Pattinson makes a comeback from a shin injury.
While confirming the playing XI for the second Test, Australian captain Steven Smith said that Pattinson has been impressive in the net sessions and hopes that the fast bowler can make a big impact.
“Patto (James Pattinson) obviously wasn’t right that first Test match, and he’s been working hard since.
“He’s bowled a lot in the nets and we’re all confident he’ll get through this next Test match and hopefully he can have a big impact for us.
“I think he had three or four sessions and bowled with good pace.
“Hopefully he can do some of the same this week and it looks like the conditions are going to suit him nicely.”
The bowling attack will be led by Josh Hazlewood alongside Pattinson whereas Jackson Bird also retains his place in the playing XI.
Smith wants Hazlewood to continue his impressive form while he wants Bird to emulate the way Siddle bowls in Test matches by building pressure on the batsmen.
“I think Josh can bowl the same way he’s been bowling; he’s been really impressive for quite a while now.
“If he continues to bowl the way he is at the moment he’s going to take a lot of wickets.
“With Jackson Bird, for him it’s just about keeping it simple and doing what he does well.
“I guess it’s pretty similar to ‘Sidds’ (Siddle) in a way, in hitting a good area and let the ball try and do something off a good length, building pressure.
“I think that’s understandable (that Bird took some time to find his rhythm), it was his first game back for a little while, he was a little bit nervous.
“I think he did get better as the game went on.
“I’m sure he’ll come out all guns blazing and if he does get the ball in the right areas he’ll get a lot of assistance out of that wicket.”
Australia will ascend to the pole position in the International Cricket Council Test team rankings if they win the ongoing series against New Zealand.
Admitting that becoming the number one team in all formats is their goal, Smith also laid importance of winning games away from home.
“We want to be No.1 in the world in every format.
“If we win this week we will be No.1 in two (formats - Test and ODIs).
“We want to win away from home as well, that’s massive on my agenda.
“We played really well in the first Test to adapt and it’s going to be important to do that a lot.
“For me, it’s satisfying to get that ranking, that would be really good for us as a group.
“When you’re No.1, you want to stretch that as a group.
“That’s really important for us.”
The upcoming second Test match between New Zealand and Australia will be the final international appearance for the Black Caps captain Brendon McCullum, who has announced his retirement from the game.
Australia XI for second Test:
David Warner, Joe Burns, Usman Khawaja, Steve Smith (captain), Adam Voges, Mitchell Marsh, Peter Nevill (wkt), James Pattinson, Josh Hazlewood, Nathan Lyon, Jackson Bird.
© Cricket World 2016