Waugh rubbishes 'bat first' theory piling on Australia ahead of Gabba Test

Sydney, Nov. 4 (ANI): Former Australian cricket skipper Steve Waugh has said Michael Clarke doesn't need to worry about any obligation of batting first against the Proteas in the first Test at The Gabba in Brisbane.

Waugh, who led Australia in 15 of their world-record 16 consecutive Test wins and to the 1999 World Cup title, laughed off the notion that it would be "un-Australian" or "weak" should Clarke opt to avoid batting first on a juicy, green Brisbane wicket designed for pace.

"You bat or bowl according to the conditions, the strength of your side and the weakness of the opposition ... if you think you should bowl first and believe you're capable of taking 10 wickets on the first day, you go for it," the Sydney Morning Herald quoted Waugh, as saying.

"Of course, he doesn't have to bat. I think it's a load of rubbish this [approach that] nine times out of 10 you bat and on the 10th you think about it and bat," he added.

Waugh said he had no idea where the "bat first" edict stemmed from and remembered former Test skipper and Channel Nine commentator Ian Chappell often "ribbed" him about it.

"It doesn't matter if you win or lose the toss because whatever you do first you need to do well. If you think your team should bowl first then you bowl, you shouldn't worry about what people think about your decision," he said.

"I think having to bat first if you win the toss is just one of those myths ... A lot of times when I won the toss we bowled first, so that shows I certainly don't subscribe to that theory," he added. (ANI)