West Indies v Australia, Super Eights, St Lucia May 10, 2010

West Indies seek to stay alive at home

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Match Facts

Tuesday, May 11, Gros Islet
Start time 1700 (2100 GMT)

The Big Picture

Three years ago an Australian team went through a World Cup in the Caribbean without losing a game. Michael Clarke's Twenty20 outfit has some way to go to match that feat, but four wins from four has provided an excellent start to the tournament. Australia's big victory over Sri Lanka has almost assured them of a place in the semi-finals, but they will be keen to keep their winning momentum going in their last Super Eights encounter against West Indies.

The hosts have been impressive as well, with a loss to Sri Lanka their only blemish. Unfortunately for them, victory over Australia won't guarantee their spot in the final four; if Sri Lanka also beat India, Chris Gayle's team could finish with four wins from five games and still fail to progress. Much will rest on the shoulders of Gayle, whose first major contribution for the series came with his 98 against India.

Australia's three fast bowlers have been striking fear into batsmen from all teams but Gayle is one man for whom the speed could be an advantage. The quicker Dirk Nannes, Shaun Tait and Mitchell Johnson bowl, the faster the ball could fly off his bat. Just ask Brett Lee, who in last year's World Twenty20 was mauled so badly by Gayle at The Oval that the ball at one stage ended up on the roof of the Bedser Stand. It would take a massive defeat for Australia to miss out; on his best day, Gayle is one man capable of inflicting such a result.

Form guide (most recent first)

Australia WWWWT
West Indies WLWWL

Watch out for...

While Gayle is West Indies' most important player, their hopes lift significantly when secondary men like Kieron Pollard step up. Pollard has had little impact with the bat in this tournament, with scores of 8, 0, 9 and 17, and his overall batting record in Twenty20 internationals is poor. For a man who has made his name in the shortest format with domestic teams all around the world, it's about time he did the same for West Indies.

Cameron White has long been regarded as one of the best Twenty20 players in the world, but since he has taken on the vice-captaincy under Michael Clarke he has taken his game to a new level for Australia. His wonderful 64 from 26 balls against New Zealand in February forced an eliminator over and his 85 against Sri Lanka on Sunday rescued Australia to keep their unbeaten run alive.

Team news

West Indies have altered their batting order at times during this tournament but Wavell Hinds seems now to be the preferred option ahead of Narsingh Deonarine and Andre Fletcher. Nikita Miller could come in to play on the slower St Lucia pitch, but it's hard to see which of the fast men would make way.

West Indies (probable) 1 Chris Gayle (capt), 2 Shivnarine Chanderpaul, 3 Ramnaresh Sarwan, 4 Kieron Pollard, 5 Dwayne Bravo, 6 Wavell Hinds, 7 Darren Sammy, 8 Denesh Ramdin (wk), 9 Sulieman Benn, 10 Jerome Taylor, 11 Kemar Roach.

There were murmurs from Michael Clarke that Nathan Hauritz might enter calculations in St Lucia, but barring unforseen injuries it's very unlikely Australia will change their winning team. The pace attack has been a success, Smith is keeping Hauritz out, and the captain Clarke is the only one of the batsmen who has so far failed to have a major impact.

Australia (probable) 1 David Warner, 2 Shane Watson, 3 Michael Clarke (capt), 4 Brad Haddin (wk), 5 David Hussey, 6 Cameron White, 7 Michael Hussey, 8 Steven Smith, 9 Mitchell Johnson, 10 Dirk Nannes, 11 Shaun Tait.

Pitch and conditions

The quicker pitch in Barbados now gets a rest until the final, and the teams must readjust to the slower surface in Gros Islet.

Stats and trivia

  • West Indies have lost only one game this tournament but most of their batsmen are yet to play a big role. After Gayle's 98, the next best score by any of their players was Darren Sammy's 30 against Ireland

  • By contrast, Australia's batsmen have made five half-centuries during their four games

  • Dirk Nannes is leading the tournament wicket tally with 12 at 8.58 and an economy rate of 6.86; his new-ball partner Shaun Tait is equal fifth with eight victims

  • The teams have met four times in Twenty20 internationals for two wins each

    Quotes

    "This victory eased the pressure a bit but not enough to relax."
    Chris Gayle after West Indies' win over India

    "We need to make sure we're all fit and firing and be willing to adapt to completely different conditions on Tuesday."
    Michael Clarke

    Brydon Coverdale is a staff writer at Cricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • SUMIT-KHULLAR on May 11, 2010, 20:47 GMT

    Pollard should be at number three. Bravo will be the key for home side.

  • dummy4fb on May 11, 2010, 20:46 GMT

    wake up fellas.....we yes we SRI LANKAN knocked INDIA out of the tournament with a win...ahahahahaha..........sooooooooo........wht next......cheers !!!

  • dummy4fb on May 11, 2010, 20:40 GMT

    Everything finished for India...Bags packed and fly back...!! On Other Hand Pakistan from no-where to Semi-Finals, Pakistan Won Only 2 out 5 and reach to the Semi-Finals ;-)

  • darkpharaoh on May 11, 2010, 20:36 GMT

    It will be a good contest, of course the Australians have been clinical and have the upper hand in my view. West Indies will need to draw off of the home crowd's energy to stand any chance.

    I wonder why the heck Wavell Hinds is playing on the team at the expense of Narsingh Deonarine? Hinds looks like a cassette recorder on a field filled with ipods. That's the stupidest selection decision I've seen in a very long time. West Indies better get their act together.

    My prediction is that Australia (team that I really don't like) will move up to 5-0.

  • dummy4fb on May 11, 2010, 20:27 GMT

    windies must win this match

  • mohamedamin on May 11, 2010, 19:04 GMT

    Listen all yalll....Windies will win today...Our boys will beat the aussies..no doubt abt that...the whole caribbean is supporting this WI team this afternoon........

  • dummy4fb on May 11, 2010, 16:31 GMT

    West Indies will win against mighty Australia. They batting have to click today if they want to stay in this Tournament!

  • wizzla on May 11, 2010, 16:25 GMT

    India is a wonderful team but their mistake is to Play an extra batsman. Since t20 is already a batsmans game it therfore means that to gain an advantage one must play an extra or their best bowlers. India have lost matches without all their batsman coming to the wicket, but all their bowlers have bowled. WI is a young team with players coming in and out there are other tallented players in the caribbean that can make the team and they will in time. I hope WI wins today and i Know India will beat SL as i have seen this all too often by India, winning when all is already lost.

  • dummy4fb on May 11, 2010, 16:16 GMT

    Mathematics of Cricket - Win 4 out of 5 but your semifinal spot is not guaranteed.. Win 3 out of 5, you could go through...

    No, I am not questioning this math at all as it seems to favor India :-)

  • dummy4fb on May 11, 2010, 16:02 GMT

    I really think pollard should bat more up in ther order, Gayle however should bowled himself 4 overs....

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