Sydney: Australia`s replacement skipper George Bailey has played down the prospect of him being elevated to the captaincy, with captain Michael Clarke and his degenerative back undergoing treatment in a specialist clinic in London.
Because of Clarke`s injury, the pressure falls on Bailey to hold together Australian hopes for perhaps the remainder of the ICC Champions Trophy, even as Australia`s 25-match, 240-day odyssey against England goes underway.
With critics eyeing Bailey to see how he can marshall his troops and prevent panic setting in over Clarke`s fitness leading into the Ashes, the Twenty20 captain, however, downplayed his significance, saying that he is not under any more pressure than any other captain and added that his role is to score runs in that middle order for Australia.
Despite the far-reaching context of his elevation to the captaincy, Bailey, who has about a 50 per cent success rate as captain at ODI and T20 level, further said that he is not going to do anything as a captain to revolutionise the game, adding that the players have played enough cricket to know the basics of the game.
Bailey also said that very rarely does a captain have an influence on the outcome of the game, other than the fact of how he performs as an individual, although he said that Australia can win the Champions Trophy even without Clarke if they play their best cricket.
Bailey`s selection for Australia is often questioned by critics, but it is for these scenarios that he has been trusted by the hierarchy, adding that selectors like Bailey`s mature cricket brain and calmness under pressure, even if his batting numbers have not always demanded attention.