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CWC 2019 – Australia v West Indies: 5 key talking points

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Last Updated on 5 years by Charbel Coorey

Australia v West Indies: 5 key talking points. AUS vs WI: 5 key talking points from their CWC 2019 match.

It wasn’t quite the big-hitting, 350 vs 350 match that might have been on the cards.

But, that’s not taking away from the drama, excitement and shifts in momentum between two top four contenders.

Australia were poor at times. West Indies were ready to go. Steve Smith looked a lone figure at the non-strikers end by just the eighth over, surely wishing he’d be booed when scoring runs instead of watching one poor shot after another to see Australia fall to 79/5. He did end up getting booed after scoring runs, with Nathan Coulter-Nile playing one of the finest World Cup knocks you’ll see to propel Australia to a defendable total.

Defendable it was, as Mitchell Starc showcased his wicket taking ability. West Indies let one slip from a number of winning positions, which is a learning curve for them ahead of future matches.

Here are five talking points from a thrilling match.

Download: Making cricket an interactive experience! Discover Harrison Cricket Apps ODI version.

1. Nathan Coulter-Nile: one of the great World Cup knocks

Alex Carey, who looked very fluent, combined with Steve Smith to start the recovery job for Australia. However, he fell with Australia only on 147, with still plenty to do.

Enter Nathan Coulter-Nile. Coulter-Nile bludgeoned the highest score by a number eight in World Cup history in a display of amazing hitting and strokeplay to turn the tide in Australia’s favour. Only a freak catch by Sheldon Cottrell – arguably the best of the tournament so far – stopped Australia from crossing 300 as Steve Smith was looking to launch.

Australia recently had their Federal Election, which created plenty of debate. The Twitter kind of debate. But, surely every Australian fan would like the idea of NCN as PM!

Australia v West Indies: 5 key talking points. AUS vs WI: 5 key talking points from their CWC 2019 match. Cricket World Cup 2019 AUS vs WI Match Review
Australia v West Indies: 5 key talking points – #NCNforPM

2. Australia’s big guns to the rescue

Nathan Coulter-Nile was deservedly man of the match. It was the kind of innings you’d rush to the TV or tablet to watch over again.

However, Steve Smith and Mitchell Starc also came to the rescue for Australia in a time of need.

An awful start by Australia’s top order, labeled ‘pathetic’ by Michael Holding, had fans wondering whether Pakistan’s total of 105 last week was under threat. But, Smith held things together after he watched on in dismay from the non-strikers end against a fired up Windies attack. He ducked and weaved against the short ball barrage (something the top order can learn from), and knocked the ball around beautifully to get Australia into the game. It was the kind of innings the great Michael Bevan was renowned for: hanging in there and getting Australia to safety.

But, the job wasn’t complete. Mitchell Starc, often the subject of criticism (hey, Shane Warne), delivered the goods just when Australia needed it. 288 might have felt enough at the innings break for Australia, but you could never know for sure. West Indies are full of power-hitters. But, with a bowler like Starc, you are always in the game. Even when things don’t look promising. He took matters in his own hands, delivering superb yorkers in a crucial 10-over burst for Australia.

Australia v West Indies: 5 key talking points. AUS vs WI: 5 key talking points from their CWC 2019 match. Cricket World Cup 2019 AUS vs WI Match Review
Photo by David Rogers/Getty Images. Australia v West Indies: 5 key talking points – Steve Smith is the glue of the Australian team.

3. Huge missed opportunity for West Indies despite umpiring mistakes

West Indies were scathing at some of the umpiring decisions. Michael Holding usually elicits calm in the commentary box. Not this time. He went all in, and rightly so. Umpire Gaffney in particular had a shocker. Mitchell Starc’s missed no ball the ball before the wicket of Chris Gayle is something that has to change in ODI Cricket after the World Cup. This was to go with two incorrect decisions in the previous Starc over that saw Chris Gayle overturn twice on DRS.

Australia v West Indies: 5 key talking points – A huge moment in the match.

However, even in their frustration, they rightly believed these decisions did not cost them the game. West Indies had this game in the bag. From 38/4 and 79/5 to 288 was a massive shift in momentum. Worse, Shimron Hetmyer’s run-out and the Windies’ late-overs capitulation saw them miss a huge opportunity to win against one of the favourites.

The game was in their hands, and unlike Sheldon Cottrell on the boundary, it was fumbled.

Download: Making cricket an interactive experience! Discover Harrison Cricket Apps ODI version.

Australia v West Indies: 5 key talking points. AUS vs WI: 5 key talking points from their CWC 2019 match. Cricket World Cup 2019 AUS vs WI Match Review
Australia v West Indies: 5 key talking points – West Indies were all over Australia.

4. Composition of West Indies’ bowling attack in question

Even after dismantling Pakistan for 105, I raised the question over the composition of the West Indies attack. Were they missing an extra strike bowler? Do they have the resources to turn the tide in their favour with the batting team on top?

Australia v West Indies: 5 key talking points – Insight from my previous article.

A bowler like Kemar Roach or Shannon Gabriel might have been too much for Australia to handle at 38/4. Instead, Australia were able to turn 38/4 and 79/5 into 288. No disrespect to Carlos Brathwaite, but batsmen would prefer to face him rather than Roach or Gabriel, especially when you consider Ashley Nurse is more of a holding spinner.

Despite two very encouraging performances with the ball, is the make up of the bowling attack a key area to look at for West Indies? Which way will they go in the next game?

5. The Usman Khawaja problem

Usman Khawaja has had a superb year so far in ODIs. Shaun Marsh is certainly unlucky not to be in the team, but how do you leave someone out who has scored nearly 800 runs this year at an average of over 50?

However, there is now a problem. Usman Khawaja was hit on the head by Andre Russell in the Warm-up game between these two sides. Then again by Oshane Thomas yesterday. It was a targeted plan by West Indies to rattle Australia’s number three.

Usman Khawaja’s dismissal was a worry. Seeing a number three get out in the way he did results in other teams watching on with eyeballs popping out of their eye sockets, cartoon style. Khawaja couldn’t duck or weave out of the way like Smith did. Maxwell didn’t either, but you take the good with the bad when it comes to Maxwell. For Khawaja to back away and throw his hands at a full ball is a concern that he has to overcome ahead of Australia’s next match, as there is no doubt teams will target this.

Otherwise, Shaun Marsh, the only reserve batsman in the squad, will be called in.

Download: Making cricket an interactive experience! Discover Harrison Cricket Apps ODI version.


So, Australia leave Trent Bridge with their 10th straight win in ODIs. West Indies missed a significant chance, but it was an exciting, see-sawing game that has us all looking forward for more.

Keep an eye out for these two teams.

Also, be sure check out my series of “five key talking points” from every CWC 2019 match! The latest:

India v South Africa: India start with a win + why I say sorry to SA fans!

Afghanistan v Sri Lanka: SL escape in missed opportunity for Afghanistan

England v Pakistan: From embarrassment to ecstasy for Pakistan!

Thanks for reading!

Charbel Coorey
Charbel Cooreyhttps://cricblog.net
Charbel is the owner & founder of cricblog.net, based in Sydney, Australia. He started the website to fulfill his love for the game of cricket. Charbel has also been featured on other publications including OP India, Times of India, and The Roar, among others. For any story tips or questions, you can contact Charbel at charbelcoorey@cricblog.net.

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