Australia need to be patient to overcome downslide: Chappell

January 1st, 2009 - 9:45 pm ICT by IANS  

Sydney, Jan 1 (IANS) Former Australian captain Greg Chappell feels a patient approach is required as the national cricket team attempts to regain its aura of invincibility.In 2008, Australia slipped from the world’s unassailable Test champion to just one loss away from giving up the official number one ranking to South Africa following a series loss to the Proteas in Australia for the first time. It is now facing an unprecedented series whitewash at home.

The Australian’s depleted pace attack, after the retirements of stalwarts Glenn McGrath and Shane Warne, got exposed in the current series against South Africa.

An out-of-form Brett Lee and an injured Stuart Clarke added to the Australian woes, with Mitchell Johnson emerging the new pace spearhead, putting enormous pressure and workload on someone who should be guided by more senior players.

“Any form of international cricket is a learning curve for young players,” Chappell, now head coach at Australia’s Centre of Excellence in Brisbane, was quoted as saying in The Australian.

“It takes time to understand what’s required at that level. I think patience has to be the key. It was always going to happen at some stage that we were going to run out of that era.

“We’ve probably had half a dozen of the best players Australia’s ever had together for a long part of that successful period.

“If we want to have that sort of success again, we need to look at that sort of quality player,” he said.

Chappell claimed there were similarities to Australia’s slide in the mid-1980s when he, Rod Marsh and Dennis Lillee all retired.

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