Australia cricketers will adjust to conditions in UAE, hopes Steve Rixon

Steve Rixon said Australia have prepared well to tackle Pakistan’s much vaunted spin-attack Getty Images

Dubai: Aug 23, 2012

Australia‘s acting coach Steve Rixon on Wednesday hoped his players will adjust to the hot conditions in United Arab Emirates during their matches against Afghanistan and Pakistan.

Australia’s squad arrived here Wednesday with the temperature as high as 43-degrees Celsius, but Rixon hopes sleeping late and breakfast at noon will help during the series in which one-day games will start as late as 6pm in the evening.

Australia take on Afghanistan in the first-ever one-day game between the two countries in Sharjah on Saturday before facing Pakistan in three one-day and as many Twenty20 games.

The pre-series hype focused on how Australia will cope up with the high temperatures but Rixon said a policy has been devised to combat the oppressive weather.

“Our guys will have to eat late in night and just start the pattern. We need to start the patterns now so by the time the first game comes around, we’ll be starting to build some sort of body clock that’s going to work for us,” Rixon told a press conference.

The 58-year-old former Australian wicket-keeper batsman is standing in for head coach Mickey Arthur, who will join the tour later, having been busy working plans for next month’s World Twenty20.

Rixon said the team had prepared to combat heat.

“The weather was very warm up in Darwin where we camped but nothing as oppressive as over here. We’re well aware of how hot it’s going to be. If we sit here and talk about the weather all day, we’re not getting the job done.

“We don’t see the sun,” he said. “We’ll be in night-cricket mode, although it will be warm. But we’re not getting the (sun) rebound off the ground which is always a big problems at most cricket grounds.

“So to me, just get on with it.”

Rixon said the matches in UAE will help the team tune up for World Twenty20 in Sri Lanka.

“Whatever happens here will be a very big stepping stone to us being successful in Sri Lanka,” said Rixon of Australia who slipped to fourth in one-day rankings for the first time in three years.

Rixon said players are now accustomed of playing in heat.

“I think a lot of players in the modern day games playing a lot more in the sub-continent with IPL (Indian Premier League) and other forms of cricket played in the sub continent in place like Chennai where it is very warm.”

The acting coach agreed Afghanistan will be an unknown quantity, but was sure his team can beat them.

“Afghanistan has come in as a minor contender but they are now competiting at the top and best level. So we have got to come in with every answer and respect for the opposition.

“We also like to think that we are going with the upper hand to be able to beat them in these sort of conditions with the sort of side we have with us.”

Rixon said Australia have prepared well to tackle Pakistan’s much vaunted spin-attack, led by Saeed Ajmal.

“The emphasis on Darwin camp was on spin. So we are looking at the strength of the opposition. We are trying to play to our strengths more importantly but we have prepared well for Pakistan,” said Rixon.

Pakistan and Australia will play the first one-day in Sharjah on August 28 followed by second in Abu Dhabi (August 31) and Sharjah (September 3). All three T20 matches will be played in Dubai on September 5, 7 and 10. (AFP)