Clarke: Ashes needs no build up

Clarke knows what to expect ahead of the first test in Cardiff on July 8 but said he still enjoys the excitement and talk which comes around in the days leading up to the start of any series.

However, he says that the media and public anticipation around it means players don???t need to build up the series and instead believes it is important for them to simply focus on the job of preparing for the tests.

He said: ???It???s maybe a little bit different for me because I have been here a couple of times before, so you know what to expect before you get here.

???I think it???s a really exciting part of what comes with Ashes cricket; the build-up, the media, the public anticipation. I think that???s great for any series.

???Being an Australian player or an English player, Ashes at home or away, that???s a big part of the package. It???s great for the game but as a player you don???t need to build up the Ashes.

???There???s certain times throughout our cricket calendar, where you are employed by Cricket Australia and they ask you to tweet something, or do more media to try and build a series up because it is competing with other sports around the world ??? the Ashes, you don???t need to do that.

???The public and the media are going to build it up for you, so for us it???s about ensuring you are focused on what???s important right now ??? and that???s our preparation.???

Australia beat Kent by 255 runs to win their opening tour match at Canterbury as part of their preparation for the opening Ashes test in Cardiff and they still have to face Essex.

The visitors have not won a series on English soil since 2001, but Clarke is happy with their preparations for the opener so far.

On the Kent game, he said: ???There was a lot of positives that came out of the game. First thing, we won, and that was really important for us as a team, to get out and get a first win in the UK.

???Individually guys got what they needed as well. It???s a good start and now we have the opportunity to play against Essex, hopefully with the same result.

???We???re trying to work that perfect balance as a team leading up to that first Test, where I have always believed tour games are important to play to win to get some momentum and confidence, and then to get individuals a bat, for them to have a bowl.

???So you will have seen us change our batting order in the second innings, but our result was still what we wanted.???