Sydney: Australia interim batting coach Dean Jones has urged his batsmen to play aggressively against Sri Lanka pace wizard Lasith Malinga during the one-day series between the two teams, starting on Friday in Melbourne.
Jones has told the likes of Phillip Hughes, Usman Khawaja and Aaron Finch not to focus solely on survival against Malinga in their debut ODI campaign but attack him, the Age reports.
Malinga, a limited-overs specialist, is a welcome addition to a Sri Lankan attack , which struggled to consistently pressure the Australians during the Test series.
The 29-year-old speedster has been one of the players of this summer`s Big Bash League and was leading the wicket-taker`s list alongside Hobart`s Ben Laughlin before leaving the Melbourne Stars` camp on Tuesday to join his national teammates.
Opposition batting line-ups have chosen to play out Malinga, whose economy rate of 4.96 runs per over in the BBL is considered exceptional in the Twenty20 format, rather than score freely against him. Jones believes this tactic will not work for Australia.
Jones said if the Australian batsmen allow Malinga to dictate terms during the ODI series then it would be very difficult, adding the batsmen need to be competitive against the Lankan quick.
Jones said if the Australian batsmen manage to contain Malinga then their chances of winning the series would improve manifold times.
Jones even suggested stepping down the wicket to Malinga could be a useful strategy to put off the gun Sri Lankan.
The coach said Malinga has a magnificent yorker and bouncer, therefore, it is important to keep him guessing throughout a match.
Jones added that the Australian batsmen should avoid getting out to Malinga since it will boost his confidence and appetite for more wickets.