Article

Voges thrilled with ODI return

10 February 2013 14:47

Adam Voges says his maiden ton for Australia came as a massive relief after his efforts helped his side to a 17-run win over the West Indies.

The Australians needed a big innings from someone at the MCG on Sunday afternoon after slumping to 4-82 at the start of the 25th over.

And they got it from Voges, despite the Western Australian skipper struggling in his early stages as he was dropped on 10 and almost run out for 15.

But in tandem with Brad Haddin (43), Voges gradually found his rhythm and the pair picked up the run rate in a big way.

Voges eventually finished the innings unbeaten on 112 off 106 balls to help Australia post a formidable 274-5.

The score was a far cry from his struggles for form with WA earlier this summer.

Western Australia suffered some horrid early losses that led to coach Lachlan Stevens resigning and being replaced by former Australian batting coach Justin Langer.

But the change at state level may have turned Voges' international fortunes around - the 33-year-old impressed enough with the bat during the Big Bash League to win a spot in Australia's Twenty20 side before coming into the one-day squad as George Bailey's (hamstring) replacement.

"It's amazing how quickly things can change around," said Voges.

"We were probably here three months ago when Lachie Stevens resigned as coach and we pretty much didn't have a coach, we were bottom of the ladder in both competitions and things weren't going great in both competitions.

"I think Justin Langer can take a lot of credit for that, not only for the success WA has had in the recent month or so but for my form as well.

"He along with my batting coach Wayne Andrews have just tinkered a little bit with my technique.

"We did that just before the Big Bash and managed to gain a bit of confidence...and have carried on since then, which has been great."

As he turned the ball through backward square to bring up his 100, Voges ran towards the crowd and pumped the air in sheer elation, especially as such a performance seemed unlikely after he had waited two years to return to the Australian fold.

In his last ODI for Australia, Voges made an unbeaten 80 at the WACA to lead the Aussies to a win over England.

But that match, like Sunday's encounter with the West Indies, was a dead rubber after Australia had already won the series and were gearing up for a tilt at the World Cup.

All the frustration of a tough few years seemed to evaporate as Voges passed his ton.

"It's hard to sum up in a few words," he said.

"It was massive relief, elation and excitement. I had a lot of fun today. I really enjoyed being out there playing for my country again.

"To get this opportunity and to make the most of it and score some runs today, I couldn't be happier.

"It's been two years since I played my last ODI game.

"I guess you never say never, but the longer you are away from the team maybe you think that opportunity might not come around again.

"But the great thing is that the selectors have brought me back in when I've been playing well.

"The best time to get picked is when you're scoring runs. You've got to make the most of it while it does last."

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