Australia may be hot favourites to take the second semi-final (9.30am BST, Friday, Oct 5) but throughout this T20 Cricket World Cup, George Bailey’s side have relied on just one man, Shane Watson (pictured).
Watson’s efforts with the bat and ball saw him win four consecutive man of the match awards. But when Pakistan dismissed the all-rounder cheaply in their game on Tuesday, the rest of the batting order crumbled.
The West Indies may also rely a little too heavily on Chris Gayle but they have plenty of other batsmen waiting to take responsibility should the big Jamaican fail. Despite that, Darren Sammy’s men are outsiders to win this and progress to Sunday’s final.
Watson became the tournament’s leading run scorer and leading wicket taker on the way to the semi-final and his combined figures are truly impressive. It may be a little unfair to suggest that Australia are a one man team but it’s rare to find any match in world cricket where a single player is so pivotal to the outcome.
The one other batsman who has shown some form is Mike Hussey. The left hander took responsibility in the defeat to Pakistan when he made 54 not out to ensure that his side reached the run target needed to qualify for this semi. If the Windies get Watson out early then they have a great chance of victory but if they can add the cheap wicket of Mike Hussey, Sammy’s men will surely book their place in the final.
Chris Gayle has also been a consistent performer and his side will need an explosive start from the opening bat if they are to mount a large total or chase down a sizeable target. However, on the rare occasions when he has failed, Gayle has been backed up by the likes of Marlon Samuels and Johnson Charles, who made 84 in the win over England.
The Jamaican left-hander is clearly the most important figure in the West Indies batting line-up but a greater depth of quality in the order could make the difference at the end of this game.
As for the bowling, the West Indies seem to possess the stronger attack and it is led by the world class mystery spin of Sunil Narine. In the crucial game with New Zealand on Monday, the Kiwis were cruising to victory when Narine was brought back on but after a spell of 3-20 from four overs, the scores were tied with the West Indies winning the super over.
Sunil Narine finally seems to be taking the superb form he showed in the IPL to the international stage. The Australians simply don’t have a match-winning bowler of this quality and that’s just another reason why they are great value outsiders for the win here.
However, if Shane Watson stays at the crease for ten overs or more then the game could be out of reach. However with Narine in their side, the Australian trump card should be dismissed early once again, leaving the way clear for a Windies victory.
Australia v West Indies Betting Tip
- Bet on the West Indies to win this match at 13/10 with Pinnacle Bookmaker.