Tuesday, 27 March 2007

Preview: West Indies vs Australia

The Super Eight stage of the World Cup gets under way today with the hosts in action against the holders. This repeat of the recent ICC Champions Trophy Final in India last October is likely to end in the same result. Even with home support and conditions it is hard to see how a West Indies side, which has at times flattered to deceive, can overturn a powerful unit such as Australia, as they did in the group stages of the aforementioned competition.

Coming off the back of their recent demolition of World Number One side South Africa, Aussie confidence will be sky high. All of their batsman seem to now be coming into form and Matty Hayden looks back to his brilliant best in ODI cricket, after a long lean spell. With Andrew Symonds restored to the side and Shane Watson performing well with the bat at seven, Australia look like a side full of runs, despite Michael Hussey's lack of form thus far.

The bowling needs some work though, with Watson, Shaun Tait and even Glenn McGrath looking like they could go for a few. Still, the West Indies just don't appear to have the same wicket taking threat in their bowling department, aside from Jerome Taylor and their lack of a premier spinner is a problem. Expect runs, entertainment and an Australian victory.

Prediction: Australia to repeat their ICC Champions Trophy success.

Players to Watch: Chris Gayle and Michael Clarke.

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