Aussies think on positives after Windies win ODI series
MARK Taylor, Ian Healy and Paul Reiffel were all in the Australian team the last time the West Indies won here in any form of the game, the Perth Test of February 1997.
The trio were all at Gabba on Wednesday night, Taylor and Healy were in the NINE commentary box, while Reiffel was umpiring, as the Windies ended the drought since that 10-wicket triumph by winning the one-off Twenty20 international by 27 runs.
The world T20 champions, beaten 5-0 in the ODI series, took full advantage of playing against a depleted Australian line-up which was missing regulars including Mitchell Starc, Dave Warner, Matt Wade, and Shane Watson, all with the Test squad in India.
The tourists batted first and showed glimpses of the Calypso teams of old as they scored 6-191.
Opener Johnson Charles (57 off 35 balls) led the way before the big-hitting Kieron Pollard (26 off 17), Darren Bravo (32 off 27), Andre Russell (23 not out off 11) and captain Darren Sammy (20 off seven) kept the runs flowing, including 48 of the last three overs.
The Aussies, whose line-up included three T20 debutants, Ben Rohrer, Josh Hazlewood and Nathan Coulter-Nile, looked good at 1-79 in the 10th over before Shaun Marsh (21 off 19) and Adam Voges (51 off 32) were both run out in the space of 3 balls.
Brad Haddin ((22 off 11 balls) added some late fireworks, but it was too little, too late to save captain George Bailey's team from slumping to 8-164 and its fifth consecutive T20 loss.
As for playing with so many stars away, Bailey said it had had proved a difficult assignment.
"It's not ideal. As an Australian captain you want your full strength team out there at all times," he said.
"I guess from our point of view the positive from that is we got to see Josh Hazelwood, who I thought looks like he belongs at that level, Nathan Coulter-Nile was really good in patches, and I didn't think Benny Rohrer looked out of place, so as far as those guys went as debutantes, I really liked what I saw."