PREVIEW | Australia vs. West Indies: 2nd Test

THE SECOND Test between Australia and the West Indies gets underway at the Gabba tomorrow, with the hosts looking to clean sweep their red ball portion of the summer. An undefeated day-night Test record is also on the line for Australia in Brisbane, against the far less experienced touring side.


When: January 25-29, 2:00pm AEST
Where: The Gabba, Brisbane
Watch: Channel 7, Fox Cricket, Kayo Sports


Australia leads West Indies 1-0.

Australia will retain the Frank Worrell trophy regardless of what happens in Brisbane, after winning last week’s Adelaide Test by 10 wickets. A series draw (1-1) is the best possible result for the Windies, while Australia will be pushing for a 5-0 record across the Test summer.


AUSTRALIA: Pat Cummins (c), Alex Carey (wk), Scott Boland, Cameron Green, Josh Hazlewood, Travis Head, Usman Khawaja, Marnus Labuschagne, Nathan Lyon, Mitchell Marsh, Matthew Renshaw, Steve Smith, Mitchell Starc

WEST INDIES: Kraigg Brathwaite (c), Alzarri Joseph (vc), Joshua Da Silva (wk), Tagenarine Chanderpaul, Kirk McKenzie, Alick Athanaze, Kavem Hodge, Justin Greaves, Akeem Jordan, Gudakesh Motie, Kemar Roach, Kevin Sinclair, Tevin Imlach, Shamar Joseph, Zachary McCaskie


It looks like being a case of more of the same for Australia, despite a couple of hurdles threatening to dismantle the new-look batting order. Fresh off a century at home, Travis Head is set to play despite contracting Covid, while Usman Khawaja has been cleared after a nasty blow to the jaw in Adelaide.

Fresh number four Cameron Green will likely also be given the green light having also come down with the virus, which even spread to coach Andrew McDonald. Matt Renshaw is the squad’s reserve batter, though he has been released to play in tonight’s Big Bash League final.

Khawaja will be joined by new opening partner Steve Smith atop the order, followed by mainstay first drop Marnus Labuschagne, and the ill Green and Head. Mitch Marsh is the primary allrounder in front of gloveman Alex Carey to round out the recognised batters.

Australia is also set to complete the relatively rare feat of using an unchanged bowling attack for the fifth-consecutive Test. Skipper Pat Cummins, Mitch Starc, Josh Hazlewood, and spinner Nathan Lyon are all poised to play having remained injury free throughout the summer to date.


AUSTRALIA: Usman Khawaja & Mitch Starc

Clearly the most prolific opening batter for a couple of years now, Khawaja has been in an odd slump this summer. He has looked stylish and typically in control at times, but only has four consecutive first innings scores of 40 to show for it. Usually, he’s the type to go big and surely cannot be denied a fifth time.

Meanwhile, Starc is historically the best day-night paceman in the world and will thrive off the increased swing factor under lights. He has taken 61 wickets in 11 day-night Tests at an average of 18.16, making him the danger man having largely played third fiddle to Cummins and Hazlewood this summer.

Image Credit: Getty Images

WEST INDIES: Alick Athanaze & Shamar Joseph

Regarded by many as the next big thing in West Indian cricket, Alick Athanaze has had a relatively hard time of it on Australian shores. The usually free-flowing, positive-minded batter posted scores of 13 and 0 in Adelaide, but could a breakout performance come in his fourth Test outing?

One man who has well and truly put his name in lights is Shamar Joseph. The firebrand quick did the job with bat and ball in a dream debut Test last time out, proving a standout in the losing side. His exploits may see him take the new ball, perhaps in a ploy to rattle Khawaja who he maimed in Adelaide.

Image Credit: Getty Images


The West Indies will fight and have their moments, as was the case in Adelaide, but sustaining it across multiple sessions and days against the fearsome Australian side is a tough ask. Expect there to be some sticky situations for the hosts on a green-looking Gabba pitch, but for them to find a way as usual.

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