Yeoval product and reigning Sheffield Shield MVP Chris Tremain has done what few, if any, other quicks could recently by thriving on the lifeless, flaccid wicket at the MCG.
The wicket received nothing but criticism last summer after all five First-Class games held at the ground, including the Boxing Day Test, finished in draws, but it’s provided the Victorian tearaway with a valuable lesson in how to take wickets with little assistance.
In nine games over the past three summers Tremain’s form at the MCG, for the most part, mirrors his dominance elsewhere, he’s taken 39 wickets at 21.33.
It’s that ability to take wickets in tough conditions, and his incredible Shield numbers, that could put the 26-year-old in good stead to earn his first baggy green in Australia’s tour of the United Arab Emirates later this year.
That’s if he can replicate his form in Australia A’s tour of India next month of course, which could be a real drawcard for national selectors even if frontline trio Mitch Starc, Pat Cummins and Josh Hazlewood are all fit.
"You almost have to swallow your pride," Tremain told cricket.com.au, on bowling at the MCG.
"When you think of Australian fast bowlers, you think bounce and pace and nicks to second and third slip. Whereas at the MCG, we (only) have half an hour on the first day where it might be like that.
"One thing that we found worked really well at the MCG was still bowling defensively but keeping aggressive fields. We would swallow our pride and put blokes in front of the wicket and see if we could bore teams out.
Respecting the grind of a pretty tough wicket will put me in good stead.Chris Tremain
"I've actually never played in India but the mindset of respecting the grind of a pretty tough wicket will put me in good stead.
"I'm not really sure what we're going to get over there.
"We'll react to the conditions as best we can and if they do end up being a bit like the MCG, then myself and (fellow Victorian) Jon Holland could have some input into how we can take some wickets."
Tremain’s Australia A side plays five one-day games before two four-day fixtures in India, starting on August 17.