Old Room-Mates United

Comment and Analysis | 10th June 2011

Room-mates turned long-time opponents, Perth-born Aussie duo Adam Voges and David Hussey are united once more – and ready to fight hard for the Notts Outlaws. Making their way into senior cricket at Western Australia as teenagers, the pair got to know each other well, playing much of their early cricket together at the WACA.

But as Hussey moved eastwards to secure his future in Melbourne with Victoria, Voges stayed put, with the result that the pair have rarely been on the same side in the intervening decade.

Both men have made it to the top level and represented Australia in one-day cricket. Indeed, both have had the distinction of representing Notts as overseas player for a number of seasons.

But, until this year, they seemed destined to be kept apart, battling for contrasting causes.

However, that all changed early in February when the two were picked in the same Australia team to play England.

And then, with county sides now allowed to field two overseas players for t20 competition, the duo were recruited in tandem by Notts' director of cricket Mick Newell to spearhead the green and golds.

"It's great fun playing with Huss. We grew up playing second XI cricket for Western Australia, but since then matches playing together have been few and far between," said Voges.

"We used to room together all those years ago and we're good mates.

"But we've generally been on opposing sides of the field trying to get the better of each other.

"Huss is certainly a class act and he has always scored a lot of runs in t20."

Hussey added: "Adam and I grew up together. We were at uni together before I moved to Melbourne, but we have never really played with each other since then.

"So it's fantastic to be playing together at a club we both love.

"He is very easy to play with, captain and get on with; he's a great bloke as well as a very good player.

"When he's batting he always seems to find the gaps very cleverly and intelligently.

"He has a talent for hitting the ball in unusual areas away from the fielders."

The signs for Notts look good. In that match for Australia against England, the seventh and final one-day international at Perth, the pair led the way to victory.

Coming together at 103-4, they put on 95 in 13.5 overs as Hussey notched 60 and Voges 80 not out as Australia amassed 279-7.

An injury-hit England were all out for 222 all out in reply, resulting in a 57-run margin of victory.

And already they have shown that English counties could now suffer the same fate – to Notts' benefit – sharing 53 in 5.4 overs in Sunday's t20 win over Yorkshire Carnegie.

"Now we are together I hope we can play well," said Voges.

"The last time before coming to Notts was when we batted well together and managed to get a win over England.

"After a tough Ashes series for us and watching England win, it was nice to get a few runs to help us win the one-day series.

"If we can do it for Notts then we will be pleased because we will be doing our jobs.

"If you look at the batting line-up, it's all pretty exciting.

Hussey said: "We did it in Perth, our home city, against England and I'm hoping we can be just as effective for Notts.

"It's great to be part of what is an exciting top order with people like Samit Patel and Alex Hales, among others, in there as well."

"If the top few players all get going (as they did in accruing a Notts t20 best of 215-6 against Yorkshire on Sunday), then the sky is the limit.

After Wednesday's 28-run victory against the Warwickshire Bears at Edgbaston – Hussey was again in form with another rapid half century while Darren Pattisnon took five wickets – Notts make the short journey across the border to face the Leicestershire Foxes at Grace Road tonight.

For his part, Hussey hopes his own brand of captaincy can continue to have the desired effect on not just Voges but the rest of the Outlaws camp.

He is determined to help his side one step further, having lost to Somerset in last year's semi-finals, foiled by rain and the Duckworth/Lewis system.

"It can be a bit frustrating as skipper, but a the same time I do enjoy it," said Hussey.

"All I do is command the best from the players that I know they are capable of and if they give me that I won't ask for any more.

"I wouldn't say I lead by example but I expect people to turn up and do their jobs.

"It was disappointing the way we lost in the semi-finals last year – I felt we were right in the game.

"But I was more disappointed with the rules and how they are at the moment.

"I would prefer to go out and lose fair and square than have a game washed out where there is no real result.

"But we have got another opportunity this year and we have a decent shot."

Matt Halfpenny is the Midlands Sports Journalist of the year and follows Nottinghamshire for the Nottingham Post.

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