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Australia have lot of work to do for Ashes: Brett Lee

Brett Lee feels that Australians will have a tough job at hand in the upcoming Ashes series

Kolkata - Admitting that Australia was totally outplayed by India in the recently concluded Test series, former Aussie pacer Brett Lee on Friday said Australians have a tough job at hand in the upcoming Ashes series.

“Australians haven’t played their best cricket. In fact, we were totally outplayed. It is not great for Australian cricket,” said Lee, who plays for the city’s IPL franchise Kolkata Knight Riders.

The pacer also credited India for intelligently using the conditions during the home Test series in which they drubbed the Australians 4-0.

“For the Ashes I think we must acknowledge that the players have a lot of work to do. The players will have to really play well. However, the good thing is that the conditions in England will suit us,” said Lee.

The pace spearhead, however, refused to predict the outcome of the five-Test series against traditional rivals England which begins July 10 at Nottingham.

Lee, who is doubling up as the bowling mentor of KKR besides leading the attack, said all rounder Jacques Kallis will play a crucial role in the team’s title defence this year.

“Kallis is a great player and has been our go to man for the last two seasons. Be it with the ball or the bat, he has a crucial role to play,” said Lee adding that the tag of defending champion was both an incentive and pressure builder.

“I am really proud and pleased to say that I am the bowling mentor while still playing. It is a challenge and I am looking forward to it,” Lee said after leading KKR bowlers through a grueling net practice at the Eden Gardens here.

The former Australian pacer replaced ‘Sultan of Swing’ Wasim Akram who earlier stepped down as KKR bowling coach as he wanted to spend more time with his family.

“Wasim chose to spend time with his family so good luck to him. He was a great help for the bowlers and I will try my best as the new mentor,” said Lee.

Lee, however has big shoes to fill as Akram associated with now Gautam Gambhir-led side for the past three seasons, was a part of the core team along with coach Trevor Bayliss and played a key role in KKR’s maiden IPL title last year.

The new bowling mentor also the team’s pace spearhead, however, is willing to play second fiddle to all rounder Jacques Kallis whom he described as the “go to man”.

“Our bowling attack is good and has variety especially with Kallis around. He is a great player and has been our go to man for the last two seasons. Be it with the ball or the bat, he has a crucial to play,” said Lee.

The KKR have an exciting bowling attack with Lee and West Indian offie Sunil Narine who was instrumental in the city franchise winning its maiden IPL crown in 2012.

Medium pacers Laxmipathy Balaji and Rajat Bhatia are two other vital cogs in the bowling attack which also boasts the like of young left armer Iqbal Abdulla.

Equaling KKR’s IPL victory with Pakistan becoming world champion, Akram had described his bowlers as “the best in the world” and said he “can beat any team with this bowling attack”.

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