Australia fast bowler Doug Bollinger has had to wait 11 months to play in his second Test match but he will still confident enough to put his hand up for the new ball in Adelaide on Friday. Bollinger, who debuted against South Africa in January, will enter the second Test against the West Indies in terrific form having taken eight wickets against Western Australia last week, and is the likely replacement for the injured Ben Hilfenhaus.
"I'd like to, I really would," Bollinger said of being given the opportunity to open the bowling for his country at the Adelaide Oval. "You can ask Ricky (Ponting) that question. I'd love to but if I don't, I don't. It doesn't bother me. "I didn't take it (the new ball) in any of the one-dayers (in India) and I think I did pretty well." The 28-year-old paceman said he is feeling fit and is moving the ball both ways.
"In Perth I did, I swung the ball really well and to be honest Perth was a nice, fast, bouncy wicket so I was pretty happy with that," he said. "I was swinging the new ball and bowling Irish with the old one so yeah I feel really good at the moment." The New South Wales bowler has toured the West Indies, India and Abu Dhabi with the national side but has seen limited action at the top level. Bollinger admitted it had been a frustrating couple of years but always looked forward to contributing to the Australian cause.
"I'm just going to go out there and really enjoy everyone's company and be happy to put on my baggy green for the second time and if I get more opportunities then fantastic," he said. "I'd like to do something for myself and my team." "You do get a little bit frustrated but I'm happy to be in the 12 and happy to be in the environment. You can only fit 11 on the park and all the guys have done really well to keep their spots so hopefully I can do well as well."
But while he's keen to make the most of his opportunities, Bollinger said team success rather than personal glory was always his priority. "It's a hard team to get into because there are so many great players but I think if I start worrying about that my whole game would go out the window," he said. "I've just got to continue doing what I'm doing and bowling the way I bowl and hopefully everything that happens on the field, the rest will look after itself."
While he didn't play in the West Indies last year, Bollinger still got a close look at this week's opposition on tour. "They are not bunnies they are a good team. As I said (Kemar) Roach is bowling well, he could do anything, Chris Gayle can come out and do anything," he said. "(Shiv) Chanderpaul is a very good batter, he likes to face a lot of balls and is just a rare talent, (Ramnaresh) Sarwan bats really long and bats well, Gayle can go off at any time."
Australia lead the series 1-0 after victory by an innings in Brisbane. * PA Sport