Cricket Australia

http://www.cricket.com.au/Global Items/news/2013/2/2/time-for-west-indies-to-atone

Time for West Indies to atone?

UPDATED 02 February, 2013 12:34PM AEST | by James Willoughby 3

A shambolic performance in the series opener means the West Indies have form and recent history against them as they prepare to face Australia in Sunday's second one-day international in Perth.

The tourists were humiliated on Friday, bowled out for 70 inside 24 overs thanks to splendid bowling from Australian quicks Mitchell Starc (5-20 off 6.5 overs), Clint McKay (3-10 off seven) and James Faulkner (2-14 off five).

 
And the run chase failed to last 10 overs as Glenn Maxwell smashed a whirlwind 51 not out to guide Australia to an incredibly easy nine-wicket win.
 
The loss extended the West Indies' terrible run of form down under against Australia.
 
They have not won a one-day international in their past 15 attempts against the Aussies down under, with their last victory coming in January 1997 when Brian Lara's 90 fired them to a last-over win in Perth.
 
Of the Australian team who played on Friday, only four (Michael Clarke, George Bailey, Mitchell Johnson and Clint McKay) were in high school when the West Indies claimed that four-wicket win at the WACA.
 
With the series being five matches long, Darren Sammy's side are well and truly still alive although they will need to significantly improve to even have a chance of levelling it at one match apiece.
 
And with both matches being played in Perth, a similar, lively and difficult wicket will confront the West Indian batsmen again.
 
Starc got good bounce out of the WACA pitch but also swung the ball in superbly, something the West Indies top order will need to negate.
 
Veteran Ramnaresh Sarwan – who won selection for the tour in place of the injured Marlon Samuels – is struggling for form and after a duck on Friday, has scored just 124 runs in his past 10 innings in all forms of the game.
 
Darren Bravo is in form though, with the left-hand batsman terrific for Trinidad and Tobago in West Indies' recent Twenty20 competition, while Chris Gayle posted two big scores for Jamaica in the same tournament and is capable of destroying any bowling attack on his day.
 
We barely got a look at the West Indian bowlers on Friday although Jason Holder (1-18 off 4.2) impressed with the ball and was also brave with the bat.
 
Kemar Roach will again provide support while the spin of Sunil Narine and Gayle are more than capable of causing problems.
 
Kieran Powell made an impressive 92 against a Prime Minister's XI side in Canberra earlier this week and the late hitting of Andre Russell was exciting in the same match.
 
But you need to search for those positives and they will be up against it when they meet an Aussie side full of confidence after successive wins in the 50-over format.
 
There is no question Clarke's side are vulnerable at the top of the order, particularly with Aaron Finch and Usman Khawaja still to prove themselves at this level.
 
But Phil Hughes is in excellent touch and a middle order of Clarke, Bailey and wicket-keeper Matthew Wade gives the Aussies a terrific spine.
 
Australia – who bowled three left-arm quicks (Starc, Faulkner and Johnson) for the first time ever on Friday – will be likely to stick with the same team given their superb performance.
 
That could mean another left-armer, spinner Xavier Doherty, will miss out again, but on a WACA green-top the Aussies will be reticent to change things as they hope to continue their opponents' miserable run of one-day international form down under.

The opinions expressed here are the views of the writer and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of Cricket Australia

First Posted 02 February, 2013 12:31PM AEST

Commercial Partners