Ahead of the Test series against the Windies, WHAB caught up with the mastermind behind our selections, Andrew Hilditch.
WHAB: Welcome to WHAB.
AH: Thank you.
WHAB: First things first; how do you justify the lack of sackings after the disastrous Ashes tour?
AH: Disastrous? I don't think that's the right word. The phrase I prefer to use is "learning curve". We lost guys of the calibre of Warne, McGrath, Gilchrist, Langer, Hayden, the Waugh brothers, Border, Big Merv and Boony in the last few years so it was always going to be close to impossible to beat such a talented England side.
WHAB: Right...that actually created even more questions...didn't we lose those guys years ago? And most would say that the England side was one of the weakest and most beatable in Ashes history...
AH: Well they dusted us off so they couldn't have been that bad. And yes, we missed those guys greatly. We're in a rebuilding phase at the moment; we haven't been able to replace those guys and probably won't for many more years yet.
WHAB: Forgive me for being blunt Andrew, but to me that just sounds like a copout and an excuse for you to keep your job.
AH: Now listen son...we were never going to win the Ashes despite the best efforts of our Captain and his inexperienced squad. But we have to move on. These things take time but we're looking forward now to the West Indies and another challenging series.
WHAB: A challenging Test series against the West Indies? Are you joking?
AH: No, I'm most certainly not. They are a dangerous side and I'm anticipating a closely fought series.
WHAB: You'd be about the only one. I'm not going to mince words here Andrew; it seems to me that you are trying to make us all believe that Australia are worse than they really are and that other sides are better than they really are, in order to justify your position, the positions of your fellow selectors, and the position of your Captain.
AH: That's ridiculous. Nothing more than hearsay and conjecture.
WHAB (muffled): Douchebag...
AH: Sorry, I didn't quite catch that...
WHAB: So, how are we shaping up for the First Test?
AH: It's going to be tough. Without Warne, McGrath, Gilchrist and the likes
WHAB (coughs): Bullshit...
WHAB: Now answer me this; did Stuart Clark shag your missus? Is that why he is continually overlooked for selection?
AH: That's preposterous. If he is not selected for a series, then it is because he's not the right man for the job. Plus we've got a good young crop of pace bowlers coming through, most of which can bowl 150 km/h, which is very exciting.
WHAB: Are you sure he didn't run over your dog?
AH: No. Why is it that no-one in this country believes that we have at least 6 pace bowlers who are a better option than Stuart Clark?
WHAB: That is perplexing isn't it? Now Dean Jones said recently that "When you lose the Ashes, normally someone's throat gets cut. Now they just get paid more". How do you respond to such criticism?
AH: Well, like I said earlier, we've lost some of the all-time greats in Warne, McGrath, Gilchrist,
WHAB (muffled): Fuck me...
AH: Sorry, what was that?
WHAB: Nothing Andrew. I think that's about all for today. That's definitely all I can take...
AH: Well thanks for having me. Look, we dominated the run-scorers and wicket-takers in the Ashes, so there are positives moving forward.