Australia v WI, 1st Test, 2022-23 – ‘We bowled well but luck didn’t go our way’

West Indies coach Phil Simmons has defended his bowlers and believes luck did not go their way on the grass surface at Optus Stadium after Australia fell by just two wickets on the first day of the first Test. As a result of the growing attack

“We bowled well, especially in the first two sessions, but luck didn’t go our way,” Simmons said. “It was just one of those days. We bowled well at Spirits.”

West Indies sensed an opportunity when Australian captain Pete Cummins won the toss and elected to bat on a pitch with 10mm of grass left.

But after a promising start to their highly-rated attack with the fall of opener David Warner in the fourth over, West Indies struggled to break through in their first Test against Australia since January 2016 and As the day wore on, it faded.

Capitalizing on exceptional bowling and melee fielding, Marnes Lebuschgen scored an unbeaten 154 to seize the contest as Australia posted 293 for 2.

West Indies’ confidence may already be shaken in their bid to end a 25-year Test drought in Australia, but Simmons believes their fortunes could have been different with a few “breaks”.

Simmons also said that the West Indies could take heart from a disciplined effort in the early part of the day, where the line and length bowling of their fast bowlers was supported by the aggressive captaincy of Craig Brathwaite, who took five slips. With full attacking fields implemented.
“The first two sessions were good because we didn’t let them get away,” said Simmons, who will step down as coach at the end of the tour after stepping down following West Indies’ early exit in the T20 World Cup.

“I think a few too many runs were leaked from the last session…the day looks bad but I think the first two sessions were good.”

Brathwaite faced criticism for his use of off-spinner Ruston Chase, who released the pressure when he came into the attack late in the opening session. He also struggled later to finish with 0-63 in 15 overs.

“We will discuss. [Chase] morning,” Simmons said.” Maybe, the captain is seeing things there. He runs the show and I think he is doing a great job with his bowlers.”

Simmons said the West Indies batsmen could focus on the performance of Lebuschagne, who weathered the early storm to form a century partnership with Usman Khawaja and Steve Smith.

“I think that’s the way you have to bat, especially with the new ball swinging around,” he said. “As we saw in the last session, it was Marnes’s because he had a tough time before.”

Before the West Indies come out with the bat, they need to restrict Australia on a pitch that Simmons was advised to speed up. “We need to get a couple of wickets early tomorrow,” he said. “Realistically, maybe looking at 400 … even at 450 you’re still there. [the game] Because I think the wicket can be better.”

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