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February 14, 2015

Aaron Finch


Q. Aaron, what was the feeling of that hundred today in front of your home crowd in the first match of the World Cup?
AARON FINCH: Yeah, it was very nice. I mean, like you said, to get 100 in front of my family and friends, and at the home ground, the home of cricket, it was pretty special and something that will stay with me for a long time I'm sure.

Q. Aside from the drop catch early on, was that the best you've played do you think?
AARON FINCH: Yeah, it's up there. I think I played pretty well after that initial chance. I mean, I felt like I got off to a really good start and kept the run rate going. I think there was a part of the innings there where they bowled really well and tied myself and George down, but to get through that was really pleasing.

Q. You went into this as favorites. Do you think you've made a statement straightaway about your World Cup ambitions to the other nations?
AARON FINCH: Oh, I don't think we've made any secret about it, we're here to win the World Cup like 13 other teams are. I suppose what was great was everyone contributed either with bat, ball or in the field. From a team point of view, it's really good to see everyone playing well and peaking at the right time. I mean, we've played a lot of cricket over the last two or three months, and for everyone to be in good nick at the moment and playing well is a real confidence booster for the side.

Q. A best mate of yours was also pretty handy today, Glenn Maxwell. Given what he went through a couple months ago, to see him do what he did today, how happy are you for your mate?
AARON FINCH: Oh, very happy. I think everybody has seen the capabilities Glenn has got when he's confident and when he's playing well, and I mean, to come off 95 like he did in Perth, I thought he played absolutely beautifully, and then get his first hundred for Australia. Unfortunately it wasn't in ODI against India. I think it's just floated on, and he's playing some really good cricket, he's playing smart cricket, which can't always be said for his game at times (laughter). I think that he would say that there's times when he makes some poor choices. But over the last little while, he's made some great choices. He's given himself a chance to get into an innings, even though he's only coming in with a handful of overs to go. The damage that he can do is unbelievable, and when you've got a guy that can field as well as he can and handy with the ball, it's a pretty special package to have.

Q. And George Bailey, do you feel for him because before this match he said, I'm out, Clarke is in pretty much, and then he comes out and gets a 55 at a very important time. Do you think that you can drop a man like him?
AARON FINCH: Oh, it's not my decision. It's up to the selectors to pick the next 11, but George played beautifully. I mean, coming in at 3 for 70 on the back of three pretty quick wickets, it wasn't easy. They had their tail up, and for him to battle through a period pretty early where they bowled excellent at him, that was a credit to him and showed what a class player he actually is, which I don't think he gets a lot of credit for at times.

Q. Mitch Marsh, 5 for 33. It reminded us of Gary Gilmour's 6 for 14 in another World Cup, kind of.
AARON FINCH: I wasn't alive then. (Laughter.)

Q. History. Was it part of any strategy, or was it just a welcome surprise, his performance?
AARON FINCH: I think Mitch offers a lot with the ball. He's someone who's very consistent, and I think on that wicket, that suited medium‑paced bowling. It was a wicket that was starting to slow up a little bit through the middle, and he just bowled good balls, hit good areas and got rewarded, and there was some beautiful catching there, as well, and that makes it all the more pleasing that he did bowl well, but he got backed up in the field.

Q. Just on George Bailey again, as you said, he played beautifully, presided over a big win, but the way the squad has been picked, there's a good chance to get dropped. Does that make it awkward for the rest of you guys in the squad to know how to respond to that? It's a strange situation to be in, really, for a captain.
AARON FINCH: Yeah, well, like I said before, that's not my decision to make, but cricket is a professional sport and we're all professionals. We know that 15 don't go into 11. It's the nature of the game that someone can be in great form and miss out. Whoever it is, whether it's George, whether it's anyone, like you can pull a few names out of a hat and I'm sure that you could justify it some way. That's just a part of the job.

Q. Do you think it says a lot for the hitting potential of your team that you and George can spend probably the better part of 10 overs consolidating and the team still posts 340?
AARON FINCH: Yeah, I think when you look down at our team, that's a really, I suppose, strength of ours is that we've got guys who can play all different types of roles. You've got Davy at the top who can be a manipulator of the ball or brute force. You can use that. Then you've got guys through the middle, Bailey, Maxwell, Mitch Marsh, Haddin, they can all play so many different roles, and that's such a pleasing thing in the side is that under any circumstances you've got confidence in every guy that they can play in every scenario, and to have that is pretty unique in a team, I think, and I think that's what makes us a quality team at the moment.

Q. Obviously you dropped one, but the fielding was just sensational today. The catching was just spectacular. Can you just talk about the fielding aspect of Australia and how much confidence ‑‑ obviously you've got great batsmen and bowlers, but that aspect of cricket and how much confidence it gives to the team going into any match?
AARON FINCH: Yeah, it does, because if you're bowling well and you're getting supported in the field you're saving so many runs and you're putting a lot of pressure on. But I think when you see our guys train, everyone trains so hard on their fielding. If you've got a chance, make sure you get to a training session where you can watch Maxwell, Warner and Steve Smith all training. It's a big competition with each other and something that is pretty special to see, and you can see why these guys can repeatedly do it in a game, because they train so hard. But I think the big thing for us is that we're not worried about making mistakes. We're not worried about dropping a catch or missed fielding. That's the nature of the game. That happens unfortunately. But I think when you have an attitude like that and you're not worried about the consequence, you put your body on the line and you end up pulling off more spectacular things like that.

Q. Did you have a good view of Steve Smith's catch?
AARON FINCH: I did. I was tucked away at fine leg.

Q. What did you think of it?
AARON FINCH: It was a phenomenal catch. Jos hit that really hard. It was right out of the screws, and the balance, timing, everything was unbelievable.

Q. And just conversely for England, obviously they put down a couple of chances early, and how important do you think that was?
AARON FINCH: Oh, no one means to drop a catch. I dropped one out there and just so happens we were well in front of the game at the time. I mean, guys train so hard. I'm sure every team who's here in this tournament, every domestic team, club team, trains so hard on their fielding that no one means to drop a catch or misfield. That's just a part of the game. Fortunately it went my way today, and Davy got a chance early, but other days it doesn't, and when things are going your way, you see what happened in our fielding, Steve takes a hanger and guys seemed to be unlucky. But I think we took the game on and played well, and I think them things fall your way when you're leading the game forward.

Q. There's obviously a bit of confusion around that last dismissal of the match. What was the understanding of the Australians?
AARON FINCH: No idea. We had no idea what was going on. We appealed for an LBW, we appealed for a run-out. We would have taken anything at the time. Honestly, I still don't know the rule to be honest. Maybe it was a dead ball, but I haven't seen a rule. Can anyone enlighten me?

Q. Dead ball.

Q. In your whole cricket career can you ever remember walking out onto the field with so much confidence? The team has been in form for a long time, individually everyone is in form, just so many match winners?
AARON FINCH: No, it's a nice spot to be in when you've got confidence in the whole 15 that we've got. I mean, we have played some really good cricket, and that's why we are able to be confident in our ability. I think when you have a look at everyone's record, we've beenĂ‚ ‑‑ everyone has contributed really well over the last however long the Tri‑Series was in our warm‑up games, so about three or four weeks everyone has contributed really well at some point. The belief in each other is a huge thing, and you notice like in sport when you know you've got the backing of your teammates, it makes you relax a little bit, and in a game when everyone was on edge at the start, I mean, there was a lot of nerves in our rooms. It was pretty quiet compared to what it normally is. It's nice to get that out of the way and really get into the tournament now.

Q. It was a great holistic team performance pretty much by everyone, and because the competition for spots is so fierce at the moment, Shane Watson must have been incredibly disappointed getting that Jaffa from Stuart Broad. Have you spoken to him, or what his reaction was like?
AARON FINCH: Actually when he walked out I actually told him he'd been bowling cross‑seam and he hadn't swung any. Then he rolls a beauty and he nicks one, but Shane is a world‑class player. He can win a game with a bat or with a ball. I definitely want him in my side, but like I said twice already, I'm not a selector.

Q. England did show some fight at the end. I don't know how much you know about James Taylor, but what did you think of his knock?
AARON FINCH: Yeah, I've actually played against James quite a lot through Lions tours and bidding county cricket and stuff like that. I've seen him do that quite a bit. He did it to Yorkshire a couple times last year in T20, and he's someone who's got so many different shots, so many different skills, so he's someone who's a very versatile player. He bats at the top, he can bat No.6 and finish innings like that. He's someone who played very, very well under the circumstances.

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