In his latest column for International Cricket Council while being a brand ambassador for the ICC Champions Trophy 2017 which is exactly 21 days away, the former Australia middle-order batsman Mike Hussey has predicted that his national side could qualify for the semi-finals of the mega event if they would give their best performance on the field.
“When you put world-class talent, who are highly motivated to win for their country and desperate to win the ICC Champions Trophy, all on a cricket field together, you create a perfect storm for inspirational performances that will be remembered forever in the history of our great game,” Mike Hussey wrote in his column for ICC digital.
The 41-year-old Hussey added 15-member Aussie squad looks better on the paper and he is expecting the best results from his countrymen in England, as the eight-team tournament will kick start from June 1.
“The Australia squad looks strong and if it can play at its best, should get through to the semi-final stage, at least,” the veteran batsman stated.
Australia is scheduled to play its first match against its arch-rival New Zealand on June 2, in a Group A match at Edgbaston in Birmingham.
Hussey expressed his satisfaction while stating at least nine players, who are the part of the ICC Champions Trophy squad are participating in the ongoing lucrative Indian Premier League (IPL) which further would boost the confidence of the players before wrestling in the mega event.
“As many as nine players of the 15-man squad are honing their skills in India at the IPL, while the remainder will prepare in Brisbane at the National Performance Centre before the squad comes together in the UK for a few important practice games before the tournament begins,” Hussey mentioned in his write-up.
Hussey further revealed it’s going to be an exciting contest, as we would witness the greatest rivalries in the game of cricket while adding every team has an aim to lay its hands on the coveted trophy.
“From a player’s point of view, this tournament is really motivating because you want to measure yourself against the best players in the world and gain the respect of your peers. There are some great rivalries, such as India v (versus) Pakistan and Australia v (versus) England,” Hussey added.
Moreover, Hussey has not ignored the fitness issues of fast bowler Mitchell Starc and swashbuckling batsman Chris Lynn before stating the memorable moments in the field of cricket.
“One of the fondest memories of my career was when Australia defeated England at Centurion in South Africa in the semi-final of the ICC Champions Trophy in 2009. Shane Watson and Ricky Ponting scored breathtaking centuries, taking us to the final, where we accounted for New Zealand to win the trophy,” Hussey further revealed in the column.
The Perth-born left-handed batsman Hussey, who had also been part of the different Twenty20 leagues across the globe, had played a pivotal role for Australia with the bat.
“People in the Australian public often say to me, ‘We don’t care if you lose every game, but just make sure we beat the Poms!,’” Hussey further said.
After making his international debut in 2004 against India at Perth, Hussey, who has featured in 185 One-day Internationals, followed by 79 Tests and 38 Twenty20 Internationals, scored 12,398 runs across all three formats of cricket.
The left-handed batsman Hussey was also the part of the Australia’s ICC World Cup winning team in 2007, followed by the ICC Champions Trophy triumph in 2009 and 2006.