No need to press panic button: Nielsen
Melbourne: Australian coach Tim Nielsen has urged the supporters not to "jump to conclusions" following Australia`s third successive Test loss, and believes they will prove the doubters wrong during the Ashes.
There has been little sympathy for the side following the 2-0 series loss to India and the previous defeat to Pakistan, the first time since 1988 the team has lost three Tests in a row, but Nielsen fired back.
"The most important thing is not to jump to conclusions. A lot of stuff that`s been talked about at the moment is being led by public opinion from outside the group, and a lot of the time public opinion is a long way from the action," Nielsen told the Sydney Morning Herald.
"They don`t necessarily have an insight into how hard the players are working, and how passionate they are about playing for Australia.
"We know we can do better, we`re just looking to the Ashes series as an opportunity to show the Australian public that the hard work we`ve put in over the last 12 months is going to reap rewards for us. There`s no doubt about that."
Nielsen said while England would see potential opportunities to target Nathan Hauritz and their middle order, Australia had plans of their own, especially for under-pressure batsman Kevin Pietersen.
"It would certainly be nice for us to have some individual wins in the Ashes series. We`d like to think we can keep Pietersen at bay, break the opening partnerships early, and won`t let them take early wickets. A lot more goes into it than just talking about it.
"If we can have success over Pietersen that would certainly go a way towards opening up their middle order for us."
One of the major concerns for Australia during the Ashes will be the form of spinner Hauritz, who was monstered by India`s batsmen.
"Hauritz had a difficult tour because they identified him as somebody they could really attack, and they are such good players of spin that it put real pressure on him. He realized that if he was just a little bit out with his line or length, he was going to be punished," Nielsen said.
"He worked hard at bowling with a couple of different fields. He changes things around, but in the end they just had the better of him as far as the statistical analysis of the game was concerned. Haury`s had some really good success for us for the last 12 to 18 months.
"That was the first cricket he`d had in six months because of injury, and it`s a tough place to come back in after six months off and no cricket under your belt. I believe that these little moments are watershed moments in everybody`s career, where you actually have to front up and think, "I can`t actually keep doing what I`m doing because people have identified me as someone who does a good job when I`m doing that, they`ve forced me to change."
He added,"Now the challenge for us is to identify with Haury what he can change, what he can do better, support that and make sure when the next opportunity comes he does better.
"We have got some inconsistencies in our game that we really need to get better. We can`t afford to lose two or three wickets quickly or have an hour where we concede 60 runs and lose all the energy from the game. Nobody is running away from the challenges that confront us. We`re looking forward to getting to Brisbane on November 25 and setting up for an Ashes series," he concluded.