West Australian all-rounder Cam Green may feel the hot breath of English keeper Jos Buttler behind him as the tourists try to keep a lid on his blossoming potential in next week’s Ashes Test.
Eagle-eyed English sources have already noted how Queensland keeper Jimmy Peirson kept over the stumps to fast bowlers Michael Neser and Jack Wildermuth in a recent Sheffield Shield game in a bid to deny Green the chance to bat out of his crease.
It made it harder for Green to score fluently and the prospect of Buttler keeping over the stumps has already been mentioned in England as a likely tactic when swingman Jimmy Anderson is bowling to Green.
Marnus Labuschagne tried the same tactic against Green with his medium pacers in a 50-over game recently but was hoisted for three sixes in four balls.
Green is always a formidable foe at the Gabba.
He scored 251 for Western Australia in a Sheffield Shield match against Queensland in March then 53 and 70 against Queensland in red and white ball games last month.
“I love playing at the Gabba,” he said. “It‘s pretty similar to the WACA in the way that it plays.
“Pretty similar bounce, pretty similar pace, and a pretty similar game you have to play. It‘s always nice when you have a bit of success at a ground.”
Green is facing the prospect of a second season of Test cricket without playing a home Test in Perth due to the State’s rigid border laws which will almost certainly cost it the fifth Test.
The clash of Green and Ben Stokes is mouth-watering for cricket fans this summer with Green saying recently that one of Stokes’ greatest gifts was “The presence he has”.
Matthew Hayden said last year he would like the unassuming Green to have a more robust, intimidating presence at the bowling crease. Green did not take a wicket in last year’s series against India but said, in a way, that could spur him to greater heights.
“Obviously it’s not how you like it to go, you would rather take a wicket. But I’m actually kind of glad it happened,” Green said.
“It actually gave me a really clear idea of what I wanted to bring next time. It showed clearly where my bowling was at the time and that it wasn’t really up to the standard of Test cricket.”
Green says he will relish the chance to thwart England’s veteran pace duo Anderson and Stuart Broad even though he admits a lively Gabba green top would favour the tourists.
“It’s probably conditions they’re used to, unfortunately, but we’re well prepared too,” Green said on Wednesday.
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