Windies take inspiration from England's Ashes successes

Youthful West Indies aiming to 'push the limits' of their T20 game against Alyssa Healy's Australians

Road to the World Cup starts with Windies series: Healy

With a new coach and a youthful squad brimming with enthusiasm, West Indian captain Hayley Matthews has vowed her side will look to 'push the limits' of their T20 game against the all-conquering Australians.

The white-ball series against Australia will be the sternest test for the West Indies' new captain-coach combination of Matthews and former South Australian batter Shane Deitz since he was appointed coach in July after gigs with the Netherlands and Bangladesh women's teams.

Speaking on the eve of the opening T20I at North Sydney Oval, Matthews said that Deitz has brought a new sense of energy to the group that has enabled them to unlock the consistency that has been lacking over the past decade.

"He's gelled really well with the group," Matthews said of Deitz, who played 66 games for South Australia from 1998 to 2008.

"He's spoken a lot about us progressing in the right direction, getting the youngsters to a certain standard and a certain level and hopefully becoming a more consistent team.

Big stadium matches the next horizon for Aussie women

"His excitement and his energy that he brings has been really good."

With four teenagers in the squad combined with the leadership of Matthews alongside veterans Stafanie Taylor and Shemaine Campbelle, the visitors from the Caribbean are riding high after going undefeated from five white-ball matches against Ireland in July.

And while acknowledging Australia remain the best team in the world, Matthews admitted she would take confidence from England's success against Australia in the recent women's Ashes series.

"It's hard to say that they're not the best team in the world," Matthews said.

"But one thing I can say is that we're definitely up for the challenge.

"As a team, and individually, we would have all watched some of the games and saw where England did really well.

"But at the same time we know cricket as a sport is played each day, match-up versus match-up.

"What we can focus a lot on is really going out there and playing our best brand of cricket.

"And just trying to go out there and do our best every time we step on the pitch. And hopefully that brings about some good results."

Matthews, who will return to the Melbourne Renegades next month for Weber WBBL|09 after being picked up in the inaugural WBBL Draft, has touched down in Sydney in the form of her life.

Currently the second-ranked T20I allrounder in the world, Matthews is coming off a stand-out period.

Matthews celebrates a wicket for the Renegades last season // Getty

She was Player of the Tournament as her Mumbai Indians lifted the trophy in the inaugural WPL, she captained the Barbados Royals to victory in the recent CPL tournament and was named Player of the Series in the recent T20Is against Ireland after taking a hat-trick and scoring 135 runs in the three matches.

Australian skipper Alyssa Healy believes Matthews looms as the danger player the Australians will need to nullify to get the series off to a winning start.

"I think the West Indies can beat anybody on any day, given the firepower that they have in their line-up," Healy said on the Scoop Podcast.

"I'm expecting a tight contest, especially in the T20 format, I think that's really where their strength lies.

"They've got one of the best players in the world in Hayley Matthews leading the side. They're not short on talent, we're expecting them to come out really hot, hit lots of bombs and bowl really fast and with some skill as well."

Healy, who is coming off a finger injury sustained in England at the start of the women's Ashes series that forced her to miss the final ODI against Ireland in August, is expected to take the gloves as wicketkeeper on Sunday and also confirmed that the full Australian squad is fit and available for selection.

CommBank T20s v West Indies 2023

First T20: October 1, North Sydney Oval, 12pm AEDT

Second T20: October 2, North Sydney Oval, 7.05pm AEDT

Third T20: October 5, Allan Border Field, 7.05pm AEDT

CommBank ODIs v West Indies 2023

First ODI: October 8, Allan Border Field, 10.35am AEDT

Second ODI: October 12, Junction Oval, 10.05am AEDT

First ODI: October 14, Junction Oval, 10.05am AEDT

Australia squad: Alyssa Healy (c), Tahlia McGrath (vc), Darcie Brown, Ashleigh Gardner, Kim Garth, Grace Harris (T20Is only), Jess Jonassen, Alana King (ODIs only), Phoebe Litchfield, Beth Mooney, Ellyse Perry, Megan Schutt, Annabel Sutherland, Georgia Wareham

West Indies squad: Hayley Matthews (c), Shemaine Campbelle (vc), Aaliyah Alleyne, Shamilia Connell, Afy Fletcher, Cherry Ann Fraser, Shabika Gajnabi, Jannillea Glasgow, Chinelle Henry, Zaida James, Djenaba Joseph, Ashmini Munisar, Karishma Ramharack, Stafanie Taylor, Rashada Williams