AUSTRALIAN batsman George Bailey won't need the plane ticket he bought himself a month ago so he could be a spectator at the Boxing Day Test.
Bailey is still trying to comprehend his rapid rise from one-day wonder to Ashes hero in a matter of weeks.
``A month ago I bought two flights over for dad and I to go and watch the Boxing Day Test and now I'm going to be out there playing it,'' he said in Hobart on Sunday.
``That's been a pretty crazy month.
``If I look back it's been a pretty crazy 18 months really.''
That's the period the 31-year-old went from respected Tasmanian and Australian Twenty20 captain to the country's best 50-over bat and unlikely Ashes winner.
Bailey headed straight to Melbourne following the washout of the Hurricanes' opening Big Bash League match against the Adelaide Strikers to prepare for his first Boxing Day in the baggy green.
But after Ashes contributions that included a half-century and a furious 28-run assault on a single James Anderson over, he said the pressure remained despite Australia's unassailable 3-0 lead in the series.
``I'm still playing for my position,'' he said.
``It's not about winning one series and it's not about beating England, it's about being the best team in the world in all formats in every game we play.
``Individually there's a lot of guys that will have a lot to play for in this Test.
``Going forward there's a lot of competition for spots in the team.
``I think you'd be a foolish player to rock up not ready to play.''
Bailey, meanwhile, expressed surprise about the sudden retirement of England spinner Graeme Swann.
``He's an opposition player whose company I've always enjoyed in the brief period I've got to know (him) and one of the good fellas of international cricket,'' Bailey said.
``It looked like he had a lot of good cricket ahead of him still.''