Hussey looms as Aussie trump card in India

Published: Friday, October 6, 2006, 23:53 [IST]
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Sydney:It is hardly surprising to find Michael Hussey in such a hurry to score runs every time he bats for Australia.

The left-hander spent so long waiting for his chance that he almost feels compelled to make up for lost time every time he pads up.

Hussey scored more than 15,000 first-class runs before he finally made his test debut when Justin Langer broke a rib last year but is now an automatic selection.

He set a record for the fastest player to chalk up 1,000 test runs when he reached the milestone 166 days on from his debut and after 11 tests, he has amassed 1,139 runs, including four centuries, at an average of 75.93.

Hussey's form in one-day cricket is even better. He has piled on 1,308 runs from 24 matches at an average of 81.75 and is currently ranked the number one limited-overs batsman in the world.

The 31-year-old was handed the Australian captaincy in a one-day match against West Indies in Kuala Lumpur last month when Ricky Ponting was given a rest and Adam Gilchrist missed the warm-up series.

Australia lost the match by three wickets but Hussey did his reputation no harm by bludgeoning an unbeaten 109 off just 90 deliveries, his highest one-day international score.

Hussey, nicknamed ''Mr Cricket'', now looms as one of Australia's trump cards in the Champions Trophy but is keeping a lid on his emotions, knowing his meteoric rise will count for little if he does not continue his run-spree.

''It's going to be tough no doubt and I couldn't have dreamed last year of it going better,'' he told reporters at a team training camp in Queensland.

''It was fantastic and I enjoyed every moment of it.

''I think coming into this season I've really got to not worry about that sort of stuff and concentrate on my job in the team.

''I can get caught up in the emotion of it all and let it affect me a bit too much.

''So I'm trying to stay as calm and relaxed as I possibly can, and just focus on my job.''


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