Ashes 2013: Australia's Michael Clarke confident of turnaround


Australia captain Michael Clarke believes his side are ready to mount a strong challenge to regain the Ashes despite their 3-0 series defeat.

Clarke's team failed to win a Test in an Ashes series for the first time since their 3-0 loss in England in 1977 and have not won in nine Tests.

But batsman Clarke believes his much-maligned side are improving.

"I certainly think we take a lot of positives, especially from the last three Tests," he said.

Those three Tests saw them only denied victory by rain in Manchester, while they enjoyed dominant spells in defeat at Durham and then scored 492 runs in their first innings at The Oval.

That has given Clarke belief that his players are improving quickly and he sees no reason why Australia cannot end England's run of three successive Ashes series victories in the return on home soil later this year, with the first Test beginning in Brisbane on 21 November.

"When we get a win we will run with that momentum," he added.

"We need to look at the whole series and areas where we can improve, but we will take a lot of confidence from the way we played in the last three Tests."

Clarke conceded Australia's batsman, himself included, need to put more pressure on their Ashes rivals with big first-innings totals, but he acknowledged England were deserved winners over the course of the series.

"It doesn't matter how you play but the result is there - England won 3-0," he said. "There's always more than one way to skin a cat, so they deserve credit for winning."

Meanwhile, Clarke has played down his confrontation with umpire Aleem Dar after bad light stopped him becoming the first Australia captain in history to lose 4-0 in England.

"I remember Aleem touching me and I asked him politely to not touch me," said Clarke. "If I touched him, I'd be suspended for three matches

"I just asked the question why we haven't got the meter out there and it took a few overs to get it out. From my point of view, I have no issue."