Clarke not carried away

Australia captain knows team have a long way to go to be number one

Last Updated: 28/04/12 10:52am

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Michael Clarke: Knows Australia need to keep improving

Michael Clarke: Knows Australia need to keep improving

Sky Bet

Australia captain Michael Clarke says the team still have a long way to go before they can be considered the best test team in the world.

Clarke took a five-wicket haul as Australia took a 75-run win over the West Indies to wrap up a 2-0 series win.

Since their tour of South Africa, Australia have lost just one of their nine Test matches to go back up to third in the rankings - but Clarke says the team aren't getting carried away by their impressive form.

"We as players don't consider ourselves as the number one Test team but we know that is a goal we're working to," he said.

"I think we're ranked third now, so I still think we're a way off that. We need a lot of improvement to become the number one team.

"It's not just about one series or one summer - it's consistency that gets you to be the number one ranking."

Turning point

Clarke pinpointed Australia's last-gasp win over South Africa in the second Test in November - one of his first tours as captain following Ricky Ponting's resignation - as the turning point leading to their recent run of results.

"To be able to pull off a win in Johannesburg, and we're talking about a very strong Test cricket team in their own backyard, so to be able to level that series was a great learning curve for us," he added.

"I've really enjoyed it (the captaincy). I've been very lucky to have some other great leaders around me as well as wonderful support staff. The captain is only as good as his stock.

"They put me in a position to be able to take a risk or declare, and that's only because I have confidence in them."

Debutant Matthew Wade picked up the man of the match award after the wicketkeeper hit 106 to rescue the visitors who were in trouble at 169-7 in their first innings.

Wade, who replaced Brad Haddin for the game, has described his first taste of Test action as a learning curve.

Experience

"Probably the all-round experience," Wade said when asked what he had gained from the tour.

"Coming over here in the one-day series and not knowing too much about these conditions and learning a lot in the first three one-dayers and then the Tests.

"Just developing my game and dealing with difficult conditions was rewarding.

"Hopefully I can continue to develop in the coming months and take that into the one-day tour in England."

Australia now have a two-month break before their next Test, but Wade's form will put pressure on Haddin for a place in the side.

However, Clarke says that 34-year-old's place is safe.

"What I did say is that Wadey has done everything in his power to put as much pressure on the selectors as possible," Clarke said.

"But what I also said was that if Brad Haddin was available for the first Test in the series he would have been selected.

"Wadey, if he continues to play like that, he'll continue to put pressure on not only the wicketkeeper spot but also a batsman position."

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