Michael Clarke: The talking is over - let's get it on says Australian skipper
Last Updated: 10/07/13 11:18am
Michael Clarke: Says the Aussies are fully prepared
Australia captain Michael Clarke has told his side it is time to deliver as the Ashes gets underway at Trent Bridge this morning.
Clarke admits they go into the series as underdogs, but he believes his squad is superbly prepared and ready to go against their old rivals England.
The Australians have been in England since May, having also competed in the Champions Trophy. That competition was though the warm-up act for the main event and Clarke is relieved the build-up and talking is over.
"We've talked about a lot but I think the talking is done for us as a team now," he said.
"Our preparation is finished. Our team meetings are done. Our knowledge on the England team is done. Now, as I said to the guys, it's not what you say, it's what you do.
"I get excited about any game I'm lucky enough to represent Australia in. As an Australian Test cricketer, to have the opportunity to come and play in England is very special.
"I've said for a while now that we come here as underdogs - there's no doubt about that - but that hasn't affected our preparation and it won't affect our performance either.
"I've heard it my whole career, especially since taking over the captaincy. And when I first came into the Australia team I heard it the other way, so I've probably seen both sides of the spectrum. All you can do as a player is prepare as well as you can and go out there and give your best. The results will take care of themselves.
"We're looking forward to a tough series; we know it's going to be tough but I know our boys are up to the challenge."
"In regards to what's happened so far on this tour I couldn't ask for anything more from the players. Now it's about going and reaping the rewards," he said.
"Winning the series would be a great achievement. It would be a reward for the hard work that we've put in.
"All I can ask for, as a playing group, is to make sure you prepare as well as you possibly can and I think every single one of the boys has done that."