Australia seeks Waugh’s advice to crush Pakistan in quarters


ADELAIDE: Australia have called up former captain Steve Waugh for advice as they prepare for the World Cup quarter-final against Pakistan at the Adelaide Oval on Friday.

Waugh, 49, a veteran of four World Cups and part of the winning squad twice in 1987 and as captain in 1999, had a dinner meeting with the entire squad on Tuesday night and was also present at the nets on Wednesday.

“It was good to sit down over dinner with him and just chat about cricket and World Cups,” opening batsman Aaron Finch revealed.

“He’s obviously captained a winning one and played in another one as well. There are not many better-credentialed players to talk to about it. Guys just threw a few questioned at him.”

Finch said Waugh told them playing — and doing well — under pressure was expected from international teams especially when it came to a knock-out game like the one on Friday.

“The beauty with our team is that we don’t fear losing,” he said. “Yes it’s a knock-out, but as soon as you’re worried about losing a game you tighten up and you don’t play with your natural flair.

“Steve was great with his chat last night. He said there is a reason why there is pressure because you are expected to perform and you are expected to do well.

“So we’re excited about that challenge and we’re not fazed about losing.”

Finch, a hard-hitting opening batsman, said he sought out Waugh to discuss batting tactics following a lean trot after smashing 135 off 12 balls in the opening match against England.

Since then he made 14, 4, 24, 20 in the four remaining games after the match against Bangladesh was washed out without a ball being bowled in Brisbane.

The Victorian said he was hitting the ball well in the nets and felt confident of facing up to Pakistan.

“I felt like I have been playing nicely in the nets,” he said. “It has not translated into runs over the past couple of games but I’m not too bothered about it.

“Getting the hundred in the first game against England gives you confidence going into a big game. There was a huge build-up to that first clash. I’m still very confident going into Friday.” (AFP)