Australia v West Indies 1st ODI

Image courtesy of bigpondsport.com
The West Indies split their ODI series against Australia 2-2 last year. Image courtesy of bigpondsport.com
Australia  will be looking to put a succession of below par limited overs performances against Sri Lanka behind them when their 5 match One Day International series against the West Indies  begins in Perth on Friday. After only managing to split the 50 over matches 2-2, the hosts lost both Twenty20 Internationals against Sri Lanka and Cricket Australia will be hoping to salvage something from what has been a largely disappointing summer by defeating their Caribbean opponents.

Michael Clarke  is expected to return as skipper for Australia after missing his side’s 32 run win over Sri Lanka in Hobart last week, while Victorian opener Aaron Finch  also returns to the squad after being dropped for the final three matches against Mahela Jayawardene’s side. He will be determined to bring his domestic form to the international stage after failing to make a big score in national colours so far this summer. With David Warner out of the squad after suffering a minor thumb fracture in the nets this week, Finch will partner Phil Hughes  at the top of the order. Usman Khawaja  gets another chance at the of the order after being called into the squad to replace his former New South Wales teammate.

Tasmanian all-rounder James Faulkner is in contention to make his ODI debut after replacing the injured Moises Henriques in the squad and warmed up for the series with a man of the match performance for the Prime Minister’s XI against the tourists on Tuesday.

Former Windies captain Ramnaresh Sarwan  returns after a lengthy absence and could play his first international match since June 2011 after scoring 63 in the Prime Minister’s XI match. Despite struggling for form during the Big Bash and sitting out his side’s tour opener in Canberra earlier this week, hard hitting opener Chris Gayle  is expected to return to the top of the West Indies order in Perth. He will add to what is already an explosive batting order, with the Windies hitting the most sixes  in 15 of their 18 ODI matches last year.

Despite splitting last year’s five game series in the Caribbean 2-2 – with the third match in Jamaica ending in a tie – the West Indies have a terrible recent record against Australia in the 50 over format. Prior to last year, the Windies had lost 12 straight ODI matches against Australia. There last One Day International win in Australia came at this ground, the WACA, in 1997.

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