Ashes: Greater stability will strengthen the hopes of Australians, says Marnus Labuschagne

The Australians host India in a single World Cup Test match at London’s Oval Stadium on Wednesday before kicking off the Ashes’ last series of five Tests against England at Edgbaston on June 12.

The series comes four years after the old rivals played out a 2-2 draw on English soil when the Australian team was on the rise after the return of former captain Steve Smith, David Warner and Cameron Bancroft.

The trio were suspended for the South African ball tampering scandal in 2018, and Labuschagne is confident Australia will be better prepared.

In 2019, we weren’t as set on the team, and there were probably a lot more questions about getting people back, said Labuschagne.

It was Steve, Dave and Cameron’s first outing in Test cricket, there wasn’t that much stability, even with our bowlers.

We played three or four different bowling attacks in three matches, so there was a lot more clarity in our team, which I think creates that very consistency…It creates preparation instead of people playing for places and thinking they’re fighting for position.

Everybody knows where they sit, so we can prepare and prepare ourselves.

Labuschagne’s test career came to life during the 2019 series, when he was introduced in the second test at Lords as a concussion replacement for Smith and scored 59 points in a tie game.

He helped save the Aussies the Ashes and then was instrumental in a 4-0 series win over England in Australia in 2021/22.

In 2019, I felt like I almost needed to prove to people that I was good enough, he said.

Now the main thing for me is to make sure I’m fulfilling my role on the team and find ways to score points, no matter the conditions.

Mentally, I’m hungrier than ever, and I want us to win this series…I really feel like we missed one win last time we were here, and hopefully we can fix that.

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