Australia can take a lot from West Indies Test win
Baby-faced he may be, but Michael Clarke knows what it takes to win, and backs his team in many ways.
You can point to all sorts of conclusions from this match against the West Indies, but Clarke found a way to get his mates to find the win, by simply gutsing it out on a wicket totally unsuited to their game.
That said, this was not the best side that the Windies can field. I think it is a great shame that Sunil Narine and Dwayne Bravo were not in this team.
Australia had almost every batsman in their team mount a score in both innings, and yet scraped home by three wickets. Darren Sammy and the Windies coaching brigade must take a lot of credit.
When Nathan Lyon knocks an unbeaten 40 at number 11, it tells you that patience on these wickets is essential.
Several Aussies didn’t heed the message, nor did they exert themselves against the spinners.
The Ricky Ponting run-out became a screaming point.
Some of the lefties threw their wickets away, and that factor alone leaves Australian vulnerable again.
If they cannot find a policy for full-pitched deliveries outside off stump, they will not reap the reward.
Matthew Wade impresses me greatly. He is a little loose around the stumps on balls thrown in by Australian fielders, but either standing up or back he is superior to Brad Haddin and is deserving of his spot.
Lyon is not a world-class off spinner and I doubt that he can be unless he does three things.
He needs to put on some more weight, learn his craft better, and experiment with other deliveries, such as doosras, drifters and leg cutters.
A left-handed orthodox spinner or right-handed leg spinner is better value for Australia, as predominantly you want to take the ball away from the predominantly right-handed Windies line-up.
Lyon is a great kid and I wish him well, but the dropped catch off Sammy and his general lack of strength are issues he must address. Michael Beer should play in the second Test, although knowing the selectors he won’t.
Australia should take a lot out of this win.
Watson had two scores and bowled well. He is so self absorbed, however, that he drifts off in the field. His catching was not good.
Ed Cowan, Dave Warner, Ponting, Wade and Michael Hussey are not yet at their confident best with the bat, so they have lots more runs in them. They all have minor forms of self-doubt.
I like Mitchell Starc’s chances for the next Test. Australia’s quicks were persevering, but not persuasive. They also did a lot of hard work.
Either Peter Siddle or Ben Hilfenhaus could be rested, and injury will no doubt rear its ugly head. Pattinson will surely not be far away.
I wonder what Pat Cummins is doing this afternoon?