Countdown to the first Test of the series continues in earnest.
Australia’s Brad Haddin said the tourists are desperate to end their Ashes “hurt” when they face England in the latest edition of Test cricket’s oldest rivalry.
The familiar foes begin a five-match series at Nottingham’s Trent Bridge ground on Wednesday with England bidding for a third straight series win over Australia – something they last managed in the 1950s – after a home success in 2009 was followed by a first triumph in Australia in 24 years in 2011.
But vice-captain Haddin hopes the pain of those reverses will help fuel Australia’s bid to reclaim the urn.
“It hurts and that won’t go away,” the wicket-keeper said at Trent Bridge on Monday in an interview broadcast on Sky Sports.
“We’d love to make amends for that in this series and our progress over the last few weeks has been good.
“Now we’re just excited about one of the Tests being in a couple of days’ time. I think it’s important to live in the moment, there’s no point worrying what’s gone before.
“We can sit and talk about some great games in Australian cricket and English cricket, but it’s now about another exciting Test series in a couple of days’ time.
“It’s a new campaign now. New dreams are made and new experiences are about to be had so it’s important we move forward and enjoy this for what it is.”
Haddin was less forthright about what role, if any, David Warner would play in Nottingham after he was suspended from Australia’s warm-up matches but cleared to play in the first Test after punching England’s Joe Root in a Birmingham bar last month.
Usually an opening batsman, Warner’s Trent Bridge prospects appeared to suffer a setback when new Australia coach Darren Lehmann, brought in after Mickey Arthur was sacked just 16 days before the Ashes, named Shane Watson and the recalled Chris Rogers as his first wicket pair.
But there has since been speculation Warner could bat elsewhere in the order. However, Haddin – due in at number seven – said: “I don’t know the team now.
“I can speculate on a lot of things but I don’t know the team. I know the openers, and I know who’s batting seventh.
“He’s got as good a chance as anyone in the squad but I haven’t been in discussions with him.
“Everyone’s excited about the campaign. It’s not hard to get up for a series like this. This is the biggest series that you play from a player’s point of view.
“It’s not hard to come together and enjoy the moment with an Ashes series about to start.”