Clarke shifts focus to Ashes

The tourists needed just four days to thrash the Windies by 277 runs in the second Test in Kingston, Jamaica and will be charged with confidence going into the first clash against England, which begins in Cardiff on July 8.

“I think I’m allowed to talk about (the Ashes) now,” Clarke said.

“I was really honest and made it very clear I didn’t want it spoken about at all throughout this series and I’m extremely thankful and proud that none of the guys have spoken about it.

“I’d be lying to say it hasn’t been in the back of everyone’s mind, but the fact we’ve been really disciplined on playing really good cricket in these conditions against this West Indies team is a really good achievement from the boys.

“But we’re all excited about what lies ahead. I’ve spoken a lot about consistency away from home, I just hope this is the start of it.”

Australia have not won an Ashes series in England since 2001 but recent results suggests the tourists are ready to break that drought in 2015.

Steve Smith, recently named the International Cricket Council???s top Test batsman, continued his form at the crease in the Caribbean while Australia???s pace bowlers were able to work on the sluggish tracks.

Strong performances from all corners of the Australian side mean tough selection decisions lie ahead and Clarke, who no longer has a seat on the selection panel, is at leisure to enjoy his team???s win.

“Confidence is a vital part of any team and any squad. You have to earn that though,” Clarke said.

“It takes a lot of hard work to feel you can walk out onto a ground in an international game and have success and once you get it you want it to stay forever. So you’ve got to ride that wave for as long as you can. ?? ?? ?? ?? ?? ??

“You’ve got to accept in this game that there are going to be tough times.??? ?? ?? ?? ?? ????

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