Former Test player Brett Lee has backed Dennis Lillee's claim that Australia's current crop of fast bowlers are being mismanaged.
Last week, Lillee slammed the decision to rest Peter Siddle and Ben Hilfenhaus for the third Test against South Africa, which Australia lost by 309 runs, claiming there was no spearhead for the hosts in Perth and arguing he would never have accepted being rested during his career.
Siddle took nine wickets in the first two Tests against South Africa, including four in the second innings in Adelaide as Australia chased victory.
The 28-year-old Victorian paceman looked exhausted as Australia was a bowler down on the final day of the second Test, having lost James Pattinson to a side strain, but Lee is certain Siddle would not have been happy to miss out in Perth.
"If I was Sidds (Siddle), I would have been blowing up," Lee said on Wednesday.
"He bowled so well in Adelaide.
"They say it's because of back-to-back matches but that's Test cricket.
"It's nothing to do with the planning.
"That's what Test cricket (is) about; a test of character, a test of courage and backing up within a couple of days.
"If you're Peter Siddle and you see Mitchell Starc come in and take a five-for, it makes for an awkward situation."
Lee played 76 Tests for Australia and believes current thinking on preparation for fast bowlers is wrong, urging selectors to heed Lillee's words.
"I reckon there's too much cotton wool ... with all the preparation they do going into Tests," Lee said.
"Dennis has 355 Test wickets and they should listen to what he is saying. He's a class act and been my mentor for 20 years.
"To be a fast bowler, you have to be a good athlete and a good runner; less time in the gym, more time out training and working on a guy's fitness.
"Injuries can happen and you have to be so careful ... but there is a huge emphasis on guys doing their rehab as opposed to doing the actual hard work.
"As Dennis has said, running is such a big aspect for a fast bowler and I would like to see a lot of young guys doing that."