After their successful World Cup campaign, the Australians are back as a team and are touring the West Indies for a couple of weeks for the Frank Worrell Trophy. The first of the two-match test series will be played on Wednesday, June 3rd at Windsor Park in Roseau, Dominica.
The last time a West Indies vs Australia test series took place was three years ago in April 2012. Australia had won the three match series 2-0 with a game drawn. Things have changed a lot since then and it would be an interesting encounter when these two sides meet on Wednesday. Let us look at the team-wise analysis of the teams ahead of Match One in the West Indies vs Australia test series:
West Indies vs Australia: Team-wise analysis
The home side is fresh from a test series against England which ended in a 1-1 draw. In comparision to the Aussies, the West Indies are an inexperienced unit with Denesh Ramdin being their most experienced player (67 tests). The biggest news from the West Indies camp is the axing of their second highest run-getter ever, Shivnarine Chanderpaul. A series of poor performances in the series against England cost the 40 year-old his place in the test side.
In the batting department, youngsters Shai Hope and Rajindra Chandrika are the new entrants in the side. Hope played the final test in England and looked composed enough in the second innings. The rest of the batting order comprises of Jermaine Blackwood, Kraigg Brathwaite, Darren Bravo, Marlon Samuels and Denesh Ramdin. Blackwood has been in sublime form and displayed great persistence during his century against England last month.
The bowling department will be led by pacers Jerome Taylor, Kemar Roach and Jason Holder. Leg-spinner Devendra Bishoo has returned to the test side after a fairly long break and will constitute the spin department along with Veerasammy Permaul. The Dominican wicket traditionally assists fast bowlers and West Indies would look to go heavy on their fast bowling resources.
West Indies First Test Squad: Denesh Ramdin (capt.), Devendra Bishoo, Jermaine Blackwood, Kraigg Brathwaite, Darren Bravo, Rajindra Chandrika, Shane Dowrich, Shannon Gabriel, Jason Holder, Shai Hope, Veerasammy Permaul, Kemar Roach, Marlon Samuels, Jerome Taylor.
Currently ranked no. 2 in tests, everything seems to be going the right way for the Australians. They have had a flawless 2015 so far, grabbing every trophy within their reach including the ICC World Cup. The West Indies vs Australia test series will be a different ball game altogether and the visitors, led by Michael Clarke, look in good shape in order to put up a good show in the Caribbean islands.
David Warner will continue to open the batting for Australia. His regular opening partner Chris Rogers is set to miss the series opener following a concussion. He was hit on the helmet while batting in the nets. Either Shaun Marsh or Shane Watson are likely to take his place. The power-packed middle order begins with the in-form Steve Smith, who is on a dream run since his last test series against India. Michael Clarke, Shane Watson Brad Haddin and Mitchell Marsh will also play key roles in the middle order.
Mitchell Johnson will spearhead the Australian pace attack and will be accompanied by another deadly left-armer Mitchell Starc. Josh Hazlewood is the third pacer in the team and he has been consistent with his line and length. Most probably, the Aussies would go for just one spinner in their playing XI and Nathan Lyon is the frontrunner for this slot. Young spinner Fawad Ahmed impressed in the warm-up game against the WICB President’s XI, but might have to wait at the sidelines.
Australia squad: Michael Clarke (capt.), Steve Smith, Fawad Ahmed, Brad Haddin, Josh Hazlewood, Mitchell Johnson, Nathan Lyon, Mitchell Marsh, Shaun Marsh, Peter Nevill, Chris Rogers, Peter Siddle, Mitchell Starc, Adam Voges, David Warner, Shane Watson.