International matches better preparation for Tests than first-class cricket: Hilditch

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Sydney, Nov 23(ANI): Australia's National Selection Panel (NSP) Chairman Andrew Hilditch believes that international competition regardless of what form it takes - is better than domestic matches while preparing for Tests.

Hilditch's comment follows the decision to rest players who won the recent seven-game ODI series in India from Shield games.

Much of Australia's line-up for Thursday's match against the West Indies was rested from last week's Sheffield Shield games.

"We thought long and hard about the best management for the side. The fact that they went and succeeded long term is going to be of great benefit to everybody who was involved. It was one of our better one-day performances," The Sydney Morning Herald quoted Hilditch, as saying.

"They get a lot of confidence as individual players. International cricket is the best I think you can get for Test cricket, so I think they'll be ready to go at the Gabba," he added.

Hilditch also supported middle order batsman Michael Hussey's inclusion in the Test squad despite strong support for the recall of opener Phillip Hughes to build for next year's Ashes series.

"We don't change the side unless we're confident we can improve it. Michael Hussey scored a hundred in his last Test. He averages 50-plus and he's in good nick as far as we can tell," Hilditch said.

"He deserves to be in the side and I think he'll play very well," he added. (ANI)

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