Australia v West Indies, 4th ODI, Sydney

West Indies seek consolation win

The Preview by Brydon Coverdale

February 7, 2013

Comments: 39 | Text size: A | A

Match facts


George Bailey hits the ball towards deep midwicket, Australia v West Indies, 3rd ODI, Canberra, February 6, 2013
George Bailey is in doubt with a hamstring problem © Getty Images
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February 8, SCG
Start time 1420 (0320 GMT)

Big Picture

Australia's victory in Canberra on Wednesday has turned this fourth match in Sydney and the fifth game in Melbourne on Sunday into dead rubbers. The best West Indies can hope for is a couple of consolation victories to transform the scoreline into a more respectable looking 3-2. Australia want to keep up their momentum and complete a 5-0 clean-sweep, especially if that means runs and wickets for the squad members who are due to fly to India shortly for a four-Test series. Both teams left Canberra with injury concerns, West Indies sweating on the fitness of Chris Gayle, who picked up a side injury while fielding in the third ODI, and Australia unsure about George Bailey, who hurt his hamstring during Australia's win. The fact that the series is decided means neither side is likely to be inclined to take a risk, which should mean at least one change for each team.

Form guide

(Most recent first)
Australia WWWLW
West Indies LLLWW

In the spotlight

Rarely has the term "in the spotlight" been used to describe Clint McKay. One of the lowest-profile members of Australia's squad, McKay was nonetheless the centre of attention for a short while on Monday night, when he was named Australia's One-Day International Cricketer of the Year at the Allan Border Medal ceremony in Melbourne. It was a well-deserved honour for a man who nearly always does his job, taking wickets and keeping the opposition batsmen in check with consistent bowling and subtle changes of pace. Since the start of 2012, only Lasith Malinga has taken more ODI wickets than McKay's 40 at an average of 23.00. No wonder he is the first picked member of Australia's one-day attack.

In Canberra, Kieron Pollard reminded everyone watching of just what an exciting player he can be when he took four catches, including a couple of stunners, especially his leaping, one-handed take on the boundary that got rid of Glenn Maxwell. Unfortunately for West Indies, he hasn't made the same kind of contributions with the batting during this series, with scores of 0, 1 and 9. West Indies need more from many players at the moment, none more so than Pollard.

Team news

Adam Voges has been added to Australia's squad as cover for Bailey and is likely to play his first one-day international in two years. Voges has impressive Ryobi Cup form behind him: in his past two innings he has made 77 not out and 112 for Western Australia. Xavier Doherty is also likely to be included at the SCG, possibly at the expense of Mitchell Johnson.

Australia (possible) 1 Shane Watson, 2 Aaron Finch, 3 Phillip Hughes, 4 Michael Clarke (capt), 5 Adam Voges, 6 Matthew Wade (wk), 7 Glenn Maxwell, 8 James Faulkner, 9 Mitchell Starc, 10 Clint McKay, 11 Xavier Doherty.

Gayle had scans on Thursday to assess his side injury and a West Indies team spokesman said the results showed there was no major damage. However, Gayle remained stiff and sore and his availability will depend on a fitness test on the day of the game. If he sits out it could mean a call-up for Johnson Charles, while Narsingh Deonarine is also in the squad and might be considered as a replacement for the out-of-form Ramnaresh Sarwan.

West Indies (possible) 1 Kieron Powell, 2 Chris Gayle / Johnson Charles, 3 Ramnaresh Sarwan / Narsingh Deonarine, 4 Darren Bravo, 5 Dwayne Bravo, 6 Kieron Pollard, 7 Andre Russell, 8 Devon Thomas (wk), 9 Darren Sammy 10 Sunil Narine, 11 Kemar Roach.

Pitch and conditions

The SCG should bring spin into the equation, although it was mainly swing that caused Australia's batsmen problems at the venue in their ODI against Sri Lanka last month. The forecast for Friday in Sydney is for a sunny day and a maximum temperature of 27C.

Stats and trivia

  • It is 20 years since West Indies have beaten Australia in a one-day international at the SCG
  • Of all Australian batsmen who have opened in at least 10 ODIs, Shane Watson has the highest average: 46.56. Matthew Hayden sits in second place on 44.30

Quotes

"It's been a tough old summer for us. In terms of our one-day cricket we've been a little bit topsy-turvy and we've got some good momentum now so certainly we're not going to take the foot off the pedal."
Mickey Arthur

Brydon Coverdale is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo. He tweets here

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© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Posted by Nerk on (February 8, 2013, 0:51 GMT)

We Australians have gone on and on about the rotation policy all summer. The selectors have gone out of their way to defend it. Now, with the series over bar the shouting, and with a perfect opportunity to rotate players, the selectors decide to stay with pretty much the same bowlers they have had all summer. Apparently its ok to rotate in form bowlers out of a test match, but not ok to give them a rest for a dead rubber ODI.

Posted by   on (February 8, 2013, 0:16 GMT)

I sincerely hope that all those Sarwan sympathizers will just shut up!!! Let us not dwell on the past.I recall so many persons using this forum assuring us all that once we brought back Gayle and Sarwan among others we would be the number one team once again. There remains one player Germaine Lawson who is yet to be brought back and I urge the selectors to bring him back to grant all the critics their wish even if to prove the point that these guys are a damn waste of time.

Posted by   on (February 7, 2013, 23:58 GMT)

WI should rest Sammy and allow Bravo to captain the 2 ODI's. Maybe a new voice, new thinking, a new style will shake things up a little bit. Besides, Barvo needs the exposure, to see what kind of captain he is, just in case something happens to Sammy. Sammy looks tired to me, both physically and mentally. He along with MS Dhoni are the only 2 captains to lead in all formats. Maybe a rest will do him some good. In the 2nd ODI when WI had Oz on the run at 6 for 86, Sammy struggled to come up with ideas to finish off OZ. He did nothing remotely creative to get a wicket as Aus kept building their innings. Nothing. His inability to summon any inspiration in that situation, was clearly an indication of a man who was "fried' mentally. To make matters worse, his manner of dismal (slugging when WI RRR was only 5 per over) was inexcusable, especially when Pollard just got out slugging for sixes!!.Certainly not what you would expect from the CAPTAIN!! But this is WI, Sammy plays on and on !!

Posted by   on (February 7, 2013, 23:04 GMT)

I need sammy to rest a game. he plays all format with no time off. lets try bravo, a different mind set.

Posted by R_U_4_REAL_NICK on (February 7, 2013, 22:53 GMT)

Really baffles me why Clint McKay aint considered for tests, while fragile speed-obsessed expensers like Pattinson and Cummins are! Hasn't the great McGrath taught the Aus. selectors anything?

Posted by Front-Foot-Lunge on (February 7, 2013, 21:35 GMT)

@jonesy2: "Hauritz, Bollinger, white and Beer.... world quality". Just ask Alistair Cook if he agrees with you that they're 'world quality'. I'm not sure he'd agree with you. Any guesses why?

Posted by Front-Foot-Lunge on (February 7, 2013, 21:32 GMT)

@jonesy2: "mckay stays in the side of course": How's Mckay getting on as the 'next Mcgrath' as you so elegantly stated a year ago? And what about Wade as the 'next Gilchrist'? The 'Wade' saga must have been a real drag mate.

Posted by 10yearstudent on (February 7, 2013, 21:03 GMT)

when wi get rampaul back and samuels, they will be a lot better. A lot more swing bowling in the start of the innings and better middle batting, than what sarwan is providing

Posted by wellrounded87 on (February 7, 2013, 20:51 GMT)

@nafzak Not true at all. Rugby union and Rugby league play their series through and i'm sure there are more sports that do it. Fans don't care too much about series' in cricket anyways international cricket games are rare opportunities to see your country represented live. In Brisbane i think we've had 3 International games this year. I would hate to have one of those 3 cancelled just because it's a "dead rubber". Every game is worth playing for and watching.

Posted by vladtepes on (February 7, 2013, 20:10 GMT)

i was glad the west indies finally did what they should have done years ago: drop gayle down the order, even if it took an injury to do it. hopefully, when he's healed, they won't make the mistake of moving him back into an opener's spot. also, except for injuries, why don't the west indies play 4 seamers anymore? when not injured they can choose from best, sammy, rampaul, holder, roach, and a bunch of others.

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Brydon CoverdaleClose
Brydon Coverdale Assistant Editor Possibly the only person to win a headline-writing award for a title with the word "heifers" in it, Brydon decided agricultural journalism wasn't for him when he took up his position with ESPNcricinfo in Melbourne. His cricketing career peaked with an unbeaten 85 in the seconds for a small team in rural Victoria on a day when they could not scrounge up 11 players and Brydon, tragically, ran out of partners to help him reach his century. He is also a compulsive TV game-show contestant and has appeared on half a dozen shows in Australia.
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