Surviving Pakistan's Yasir Shah is Australia's number one plan: Peter Siddle
Yasir played a key role in Australia's unraveling during the last UAE tour in 2014, when the legspinner took 12 wickets at an average of 17.25 to drive the hosts to a thumping 2-0 win in the two-test series.
Four years later, a raw Australia squad has returned to the Gulf state without two of their best batsmen in the suspended Steve Smith and David Warner and would appear vulnerable to another spin bowling assault from Sarfraz Ahmed's team.
Looking to counter Yasir and 19-year-old prodigy Shadab Khan, Australia have re-hired spin bowling consultant Sridharan Sriram and flown in two Indian wrist spinners, including Pardeep Sahu, who has played for Indian Premier League side Kings XI Punjab.
Siddle said the tourists had spent plenty of time in the Dubai heat working out ways to deal with leg spin and Yasir, specifically.
"He's (Yasir) going to play a big part," said the veteran paceman.
"But he's not the only one we've got to focus on as we get closer."
Recalled to the test squad for the first time in two years, 33-year-old Siddle expects to play a support role behind Australia's own spinners but believes the Dubai wicket could be more lively than usual after hosting the recent Asia Cup.
The test series is Australia's first since the scandal-plagued South Africa tour, which led to long suspensions for former captain Smith, Warner, and batsman Cameron Bancroft for ball-tampering.
With regular pacemen Josh Hazlewood and Pat Cummins ruled out of the tour by injury, Siddle said he felt his experience was an important factor in his recall as the team strives to forge a new identity.
"From an outside point of view, the side probably in the last little bit maybe lacked a little bit of leadership," he said.
"I think without having the captaincy or vice-captaincy or any of those terms, it's just about being a leader in my own right, doing what I do, lead by example and just help out the young guys."