Michael Clarke predicts Australia Ashes 'fight' against England

Michael Clarke
Michael Clarke

Captain Michael Clarke says Australia's Test series whitewash by India will have no bearing on the Ashes.

Australia were beaten 4-0 in India, a tour that also saw four players dropped for disciplinary reasons.

England host Australia this summer before the teams meet down under later in the year.

"One bad tour doesn't define a squad and I'm confident we can take the fight to England," said Clarke, who is currently recovering from injury.

The first Test against England, who triumphed 2-1 in India before Christmas, starts on 10 July at Trent Bridge.

England, who have won the last two Ashes series, sit second in the International Cricket Council rankings,external-link while Australia slipped one place to fourth with defeat in India.

Clarke, 31, added: "All of us understand our performances over the last four Tests were not acceptable.

"That said, we are only a couple of months removed from advancing to within one Test match of taking the number one ranking from South Africa.

"That suggests all is not lost and talk of us being the worst Australian team in historyexternal-link is a bit harsh."

Clarke celebrated the second anniversary of his appointment as Australia Test captain with a night in hospital suffering from gastroenteritis at the weekend.

Last week, he was ruled out for 10 weeks with the hamstring and lower back injuries which prevented him playing in the final Test in India, but he is expected to be fit to face England.

"Everyone in Australian cricket knows how much the Ashes means to the country and we will do everything within our power to turn the ship around after our disappointing tour of India," he said.

"The players know how big the next 12 months are and it is still our aim to win back the urn and make Australia proud."