Sydney: Former Australian Test player Michael Hussey has given a strong endorsement of ODI captain George Bailey as a `hot favourite` to claim the vacant middle order spot in Australia`s squad for the winter Ashes series.
As Australia`s selectors look to finalise the Ashes squad before the first Test in Brisbane on November 21, Bailey is a strong contender for the post given his massive 478 runs accumulated during Australia`s recent limited-overs tour of India.
According to News.com.au, although the rise of Bailey has been unorthodox, but he has proven his leadership and run-scoring qualities in India and Hussey believes that Bailey has all the right qualities to play Test cricket, adding that it is good to have experience.
Hussey further said that Bailey knows his game well and has got a good understanding of the game, adding that the player has shown through his captaincy that he has a very good temperament and composure and can be calm under pressure, which is a very crucial thing for a Test player, especially in an Ashes series.
The report mentioned that the other contenders for the No. 6 spot are Shaun Marsh, Alex Doolan , Callum Ferguson and Usman Khawaja, with Hussey saying that it is time for the selectors to `pick and stick`.
Comparisons have been made between Bailey and Hussey - both middle order batsmen who served long apprenticeships in domestic cricket before being called up to the national team, the report added.