As an emotional Australia get ready to play the final cricket Test against India at the Sydney Cricket Ground (SCG) starting Tuesday, medium-pacer Peter Siddle said his team is keen to put up a fine show in memory of late Phillip Hughes, who succumbed to a fatal bouncer on this venue five weeks back.
The Sydney Cricket and Sports Ground Trust has also planned to unveil a bronze plaque in memory of Hughes, who died two days after a Sean Abbott delivery hit the back of the helmet in a freak on-field accident.
Siddle, who was not picked for the Brisbane and Melbourne games after playing the first Test in Adelaide, said that keeping emotions in check will not be easy.
“I had an opportunity to fly down and play the big bash game couple of weeks ago down in Sydney during the Brisbane Test and I think turning up there was a bit awkward. Little bit daunting at first to walk out on the ground and spend some time out there. It’s going to be hard, we all know that,” Siddle told reporters here.
Having already reclaimed the Border-Gavaskar Trophy post the draw at Melbourne and a 2-0 series lead, Siddle said that great camaraderie between the players has made things easy.
“I think the lead ups are probably going to be the hardest. The best thing about all this is being able to be together as a team. That’s what has kept us strong over the last couple of weeks. Some of our best friends doing it together and if we want to talk about it we can.
“It’s going to be the best opportunity for us to be all together and be as one in that match. Once that match starts then we will get stuck in and put up a mighty fine contest for him,” he said.
Siddle, 30, who took two Indian wickets in the first innings of the opening Test went wicketless in the second innings and was not picked in the XI thereafter. But the bowler, a veteran of 56 Tests, believes that his part is to be fit and perform when required.
“Just been ready to go when the opportunity comes up. I guess that’s the hardest thing. Brisbane gave us an opportunity for a bit of change and they took that and the boys took their chances. I think that’s the nature of the game that you never want to give up your spot. Just keep working on whatever I can and keep controlling that I can.”
After making his debut against India in 2008 at Mohali, Siddle has been in and out of the Australian side but he opines that in-house competition is always good.
“There’s been loads of guys around for the last 5 or 6 years. That has always been the talking point. There have always been people ready to go and ready to take your spot. What I have been able to do is stay fit and stay on the park.
“I think that has been the key to my success and throughout my career I have tried to stay on the park and be fit and ready to go when needed.”