Australia`s rebuilding may take years: Arthur

Brisbane: New Australian coach Mickey Arthur warned on Tuesday that fans needed to be patient as the national side undergoes a rebuilding process that could take years to come to fruition.

The South African`s recent appointment as Australia`s first foreign coach completed a major overhaul sparked by the Ashes debacle against England earlier this year.

But Arthur said it could take until his contract expires at the end of the 2015 World Cup for Australia to get a true indication of their world standing.

Arthur takes charge of Australia for the first time in Thursday`s first of two Tests against New Zealand at Brisbane`s Gabba ground.

"We have to be realistic," Arthur told reporters. "But if we keep chipping away, in a year or two we could be top of the tree again.”

"I guess it (deadline) is the length of my contract, which is until the end of the World Cup.”

"That will be after back-to-back Ashes series, a Twenty20 World Cup and a 50-over World Cup. Then you will know exactly where we are at. Have some patience with the team but also embrace the excitement of the young talent."

At least three players will make their Test debuts against the Black Caps this week.

Young quicks Mitchell Starc, Ben Cutting and James Pattinson are in line for a start while opening batsman David Warner is expected to debut. Arthur hoped the team`s new rotation policy could groom up to 25 players capable of playing international cricket by the end of the southern summer.

"We want to build a sustainable squad. With the amount of cricket we play, it is impossible to have 15 players," he said.

"If by the end of the summer we can bolster our squad from 15 guys capable of playing international cricket at any given time to a squad of 20 to 25, then Australian cricket is going to be in a really healthy state.”

"It`s by default that this opportunity has arisen (due to injuries) but the benefit is that we are going to have three more guys knowing the intensity required to be in Test match cricket."

Captain Michael Clarke, who along with Arthur has been included on the revamped selection panel, faced all three fast bowlers in the nets on Tuesday.

Cutting, 24, and 21-year-olds Pattinson and Starc did not hold back in front of new selectors John Inverarity, Rod Marsh and Andy Bichel.

"It felt very fast," veteran batsman Mike Hussey said. "But they were all probably 140kph (90 mph) and there is a bit of movement on those tracks -- it was a proper workout. It certainly got the adrenalin rushing."

Bureau Report

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