Hughes remains under immense pressure ahead of this week’s third test despite finally spending time in the middle in Australia’s tour match against county side Northamptonshire.
After a brisk half century he will be given another chance by selectors to ignite his Ashes campaign, as the series heads north to Edgbaston for the next thrilling instalment.
His predecessor at the top of the order — Langer sent the rumour mill into full swing on the weekend after a few interesting remarks were made to county team mate and former English batsman Marcus Trescothic. The 38-year-old, who in the last week overtook Don Bradman’s record for the most runs in first class cricket, said he “Would play in the third Test for Australia next week for nothing if asked by selectors”.
He later distanced himself from the comments adding that it was “merely tongue and cheek” and that he “Wouldn’t be dusting off the baggy green just yet.”
Langer instead of boasting about his own success spoke glowingly of the man entrusted in his former position, the embattled Phil Hughes. When he spoke with the Australian Times about the prospect of Hughes in both the current series and for the future there was nothing but praise and encouragement.
“He strikes me as a youngster who really wants to get better and always listens to advice. He just creams them for a little guy and he’s got a massive future in the game,” he said.
With the Aussies one-nil down in the series men of Langer’s ilk are desperately required. The plucky West Australian had heroic qualities that shone in the war like atmosphere of test cricket. If Hughes can find just half of Langer’s vigour than the focus on his technique will soon be a distant memory.
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