McGrath advises Johnson to keep it simple

Glenn McGrath

McGrath, who has been Australia's most successful fast bowler with 563 Test wickets, has been mentoring Johnson over the past two years and thinks the left-arm pacer needs to keep a clear mind and not worry too much about technical problems.

"A lot of people will be giving Mitch all kinds of technical advice, saying his bowling arm is too low when delivering the ball or his wrist position is wrong, but in my experience, these losses of form are nearly always mental issues, rather than technical ones," McGrath said.

"He had a bit of a lay-off before the Australians came over here, and you cannot always just pick up from where you left off," the 39-year-old was quoted as saying by 'The Australian'.

"What I would say to Mitch is that he hasn't lost any of the ability that makes him one of the most talented all-round cricketers in the world.

"If Mitch can sort out the mental side of things, I'm convinced everything else would fall into place," said McGrath.

The injured Brett Lee said he and the other bowlers had been talking to Johnson to boost his confidence.

"Everyone's been chatting to him and offering their advice. I've been offering my advice," Lee said.

"It's not like I'm standing up the front of the class room telling him what to do. Mitch is running ideas around. Everyone's in it together. He got his opportunity in South Africa and really took it," said the injured pacer.

"He's obviously searching for a lot more wickets, but it's not a matter of everyone being panicked and stressed out, saying what's going on."

Lee emphasised the need of keeping faith in Johnson.

"It's very important we keep sound with him, keep faith in ourselves and keep backing our ability. That's why Australia's done well."

A veteran of two Ashes tours to England, Lee feels bowling in English conditions requires some adjustments.

"The key word over here is patience. Playing in Australia and South Africa, it's more conducive to fast bowling, particularly in South Africa.

"It's just so important when you're on wickets that are benign and aren't conducive to fast bowling, you've got to find a way to get around that," said Lee.

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