By Glen Robertson
Mitchell Johnson insists that Australia are well set in the opening match of the Ashes despite Stuart Broad shining in Brisbane.
Broad took 5-65 as the tourists restricted their opponents to 273 for eight at the Gabba.
It could have been worse for the hosts but Johnson, returning to the Australia Test set-up after being left out of the summer series, helped rescue his side from 132 for six with a century partnership with wicketkeeper Brad Haddin.
Their stand was eventually ended by Broad, who castled Johnson to complete his five-for, but the 32-year-old Queensland bowler remains confident in Australia's chances of starting the series with a win.
He said: "Stuart Broad did bowl well, I thought he bowled to his plans and he used his short ball really well but I think we’re in a good position. We’ve still got two wickets in hand and we need to get some more runs on the board.
"We’ve got to assess the conditions in the morning, it’ll definitely quicken up. And if we get 300 that’s a good score, then we need to go out there and bowl really well."
Johnson contributed 64 to the 114-run partnership with Haddin, who will return tomorrow morning on 78. It was the first time the pair had batted together in a Test match since the victory over South Africa in Johannesburg two years ago, when they put on a stand of 72.
And Johnson was full of praise for his batting partner.
"I think we fought back very hard, we had to put on a good partnership there, so that was quite important at the time," he said.
"I think he batted really well and it was just good to feed off him and work with him again.
"He’s very important to our team and he has been for a long time. He’s always done a terrific job for us with the gloves but also with the bat.
"In times like these he just stands up and his experience comes out. He knows what to do and he’s a great man to have around the team."
Johnson is now determined to make his mark with the ball.
"I’m looking forward to getting out there and bowling with this group of bowlers that we’ve got," he added.
"In this bowling unit we’ve got great experience; Peter Siddle’s been the man for a few years and (we have got) Ryan Harris coming back in and having a great last Ashes series.
"The boys are all confident and ready to go, but we’ve still got a job to do with the bat and that’s our first priority in the morning."