West Indies v Australia, 1st Twenty20, Gros Islet March 26, 2012

A change of format after ODI battle


Match facts

March 27, Beausejour Cricket Ground
Start time 1400 (1800 GMT)

Big Picture

Two days on from the Australian victory that secured a drawn ODI series, the teams must adjust quickly with a Twenty20 series up for grabs. Little has changed in the Australia squad's personnel but the major difference is that George Bailey takes over the captaincy for the shortest format from Shane Watson, who was filling in for the injured Michael Clarke in the one-dayers. This will be Bailey's third match in charge and every game is vital, not only for itself but for Australia's plans ahead of the ICC World Twenty20, to be held in September. They have these two games and now, it appears, three Twenty20s against Pakistan in Sri Lanka in August to prepare.

West Indies are also in the preparation phase for the world tournament. They have not played a T20 international for five months and after these two games they are also likely to have three matches before the World T20 in Sri Lanka. West Indies have brought in some specialists for this version but having not played for some time, they must first evaluate their best side - seven of the men who played in their most recent T20 are not in this squad. But they have plenty of powerful hitters and will be a force to be reckoned with on the small Beausejour Cricket Ground.

Form guide

(Most recent first)
West Indies LWLLW
Australia LWLWL

In the spotlight

Darren Sammy showed in the fifth ODI the damage he can do at a ground with small boundaries like Beausejour. If he gets some time in the middle he could take the Australian attack apart again, but the likelihood is he could be batting as low as ninth in this West Indies line-up.

James Pattinson has been sitting in the rooms throughout the one-day series, wondering when his chance would come. It has arrived in the first Twenty20 and as much as his bowling will be an asset to Australia in this game, he will also be keen for as much game time as possible ahead of the Tests, given he is almost certain to be part of Australia's starting line-up.

Team news

West Indies have named a 14-man squad but having not played a Twenty20 international for so long, their starting line-up is far from certain.

West Indies (possible) 1 Johnson Charles, 2 Dwayne Smith, 3 Marlon Samuels, 4 Darren Bravo, 5 Dwayne Bravo, 6 Kieron Pollard, 7 Carlton Baugh (wk), 8 Andre Russell, 9 Darren Sammy (capt), 10 Sunil Narine, 11 Fidel Edwards.

Australia have confirmed their starting line-up and there will be two changes from the side that played the final ODI. The fast bowler James Pattinson will play his first match of the tour and the allrounder Daniel Christian has also been included, while Peter Forrest and Ben Hilfenhaus have been left out.

Australia 1 David Warner, 2 Shane Watson, 3 Matthew Wade (wk), 4 Michael Hussey, 5 David Hussey, 6 George Bailey (capt), 7 Daniel Christian, 8 Brett Lee, 9 James Pattinson, 10 Clint McKay, 11 Xavier Doherty.

Pitch and conditions

The St Lucia pitch provided 280-plus first-innings scores in both the ODIs and there is no reason runs shouldn't flow in the first Twenty20 as well.

Stats and trivia

  • David Hussey will become Australia's most-capped Twenty20 international player in this game, surpassing Michael Clarke's record of 34 matches
  • There is no clear advantage at the toss: in the 11 T20 internationals held in St Lucia the team batting first has won five and lost six
  • Should Australia lose both of these matches, they could finish the tour ranked as low as eighth on the ICC's T20 international rankings


"These matches will give us a gauge as to where we are. The belief is there. It was clear during the last two weeks. We are getting stronger."
Darren Sammy

"It's a nice change for us to have a T20 group that has been together for a little while. Normally with T20 you get thrown together for a week and that's it, so to spent the last ten days together, albeit playing one-day cricket, is hopefully going to hold us in pretty good stead."
George Bailey

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

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Marcio on March 28, 2012, 3:26 GMT

    @Rhonda S. Garcia, in light of the result, you might like to rethink your post. Besides, Australia have Christian nd Hussey D down the order, and they can both hit big time. I could say that the WI lost because they put Pollard down the order. They wait till the end to get runs, and if it doesn't come off, they lose. Sounds about 180 degrees from your perspective, doesn't it? The bottom line, Australia tends to use T20s as a breeding ground for the other formats - Cummins, Warner, Matt Marsh etc. have all been bought in with little 1st class experience recently. And T20 is something of a lottery. All it takes is one slogger to go off, and the game is over.

  • Roo on March 28, 2012, 3:14 GMT

    @Marcio :- "Pattinson is a long format bowler"... He sure is!... But he, like Cummins both played ODI's & T20 before getting a Test match - hasn't hurt them... It is a good way to ease in young bowlers to international cricket & less demanding on the body... With Johnson & Bollinger both recovering we are down are usual bowling attack for T20's & ODI's... I think Johnson is an automatic 1st pick for the shorter formats once he is match fit... Heard that he'll be ready for the IPL season... lol... If so, he's likely to go to the UK for the ODI winter series...

  • Roo on March 28, 2012, 3:12 GMT

    @Rhonda S. Garcia :- "They (Oz) haven't got heavy hitters down the order"... You are joking, aren't you?... David Hussey can be devestating... Wade(T20 - aver @38, SR @133), Christian, Lee can all blast out when needed... Oz bat down to no.10 in T20's with Pattinson no bunny as he's scored 100's in grade up the order...

  • Dummy4 on March 27, 2012, 17:13 GMT

    charles,darren should not be included inthe side,russell or dwanye brave should open is barath is not in the side bunch of losers,selector and coach need to go,where is gayle,if trinidad side play there will win,they have a balance side.

  • Marcio on March 27, 2012, 17:12 GMT

    Pattinson is a long format bowler, not a T20 player. Again, selectors are using T20 as a training run for ODIs/tests. Pattinson is being warmed up for the tests. This is why AUS doesn't have such a good record in T20s. They do not see it as being important.

  • Dummy4 on March 27, 2012, 16:10 GMT

    Cflook,I agree that Barath got good scores, but didn't Johnson Charles top score and have comparatively reasonable scores in three others? If 40s is the bench mark, Johnson got there also.

  • Kavir on March 27, 2012, 15:00 GMT

    I don't know why they waste a good fast bowler (Fidel) on T20 cricket. He would have a better impact in an ODI. At his pace he can easily get carted around and selectors would use it as an excuse to drop him from all formats. Also, that better not be the final line-up. Marlon Samuels and Darren Bravo and not T20 cricketers. Badree has proven year after year that he is the best T20 bowler there is. He absence would baffle me.

  • Dummy4 on March 27, 2012, 14:21 GMT

    @ Marcio they lose because their approach is all wrong. They haven't got heavy hitters down the order. They put their best hitters up top and pray they don't get out. Then they have no one to really go for it at the end. They think the 50 over approach applies to T20s, which it doesn't. They try to build a platform and then bat through to the end, but in T20s, wickets will fall. What you have to do is make sure you have hitters a low as possible. Platforms are worth nothing if the middle order and tail can't finish the job.

  • Dummy4 on March 27, 2012, 14:12 GMT

    How fantastic to see such large and partisan crowds at St Lucia - almost like the old days. There's a spring in Darren Sammy's step at last as he leads a clearly revitalised team. All we need now is Chris Gayle's return and we can look forward to a rennaissance for the West Indies. Test and international one-day cricket needs them back at their best.

  • Baundule on March 27, 2012, 13:52 GMT

    Gayle and Barath at the top could make it a much stronger batting line up.

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