West Indies v Australia, 1st ODI, St Vincent June 23, 2008

Injuries worry West Indies

Cricinfo staff

Chris Gayle will play through the pain in St Vincent © AFP

West Indies' buoyant mood after the Twenty20 may be dinted by the absence of some senior players for the opening match of the five-game series against Australia on Tuesday. Ramnaresh Sarwan and Shivnarine Chanderpual, who missed the success on Friday, are carrying niggling injuries alongside the wicketkeeper Denesh Ramdin.

Gayle, the captain, is concerned with the groin complaint he picked up two months ago, but will ignore the discomfort to lead the team in St Vincent. "I never got any sort of injury like this before and speaking to people who had groin injuries, they say it does tend to take a lot of time," Gayle said.

"I thought it was going to be two weeks but it is two months now. I just have to blank it out and try and play with it and see how well I can contribute to the team. If it's not working out then obviously I'll have to sit out."

He said he would have to overcome fears of aggravating the injury when batting. "I want to go out there and be positive and block out the negatives," he said. "You don't want to take on too much at this particular time, you go out there a bit worried about the injury so you have to know how to pace yourself."

A decision on Sarwan (groin) and Chanderpaul (leg) will be left until the morning of the game. "We'll see how they feel," Gayle said, "and if they get a chance to play, we have to wait and see." If Ramdin, the wicketkeeper, is not cleared Patrick Brown, the Barbados gloveman, will take over.

"The team is carrying a few niggles so we have to be careful how we use the guys because guys are struggling, but we will try to come with the best combination and see how well we can cope with it against Australia," Gayle said. "It is an opportunity for the likes of Andre Fletcher and Kieron Pollard, who have been around, to get a chance to play and try and prove themselves."