On what is expected to be a bouncy and fast pitch at the Optus Stadium – a far cry from slower Caribbean surfaces – the West Indies’ pace attack is expected to take on Australia’s experienced batsmen in the first Test starting on Wednesday. Be patient with hawks.
Having not won a Test in Australia for 25 years, the West Indies are underdogs in the two-Test series, but their talented pace-setters offer hope of a positive result in favorable conditions for the bowlers. While it will be tempting for him to go all-out against a team returning from a four-month Test break, he has been advised to bowl too much or too little on a ground where runs can come quickly.
“I think the most important thing for our bowlers is to make sure that the Australian batsmen work hard for their runs. We just have to assess the situation quickly and make the necessary adjustments.”
Holder said he would be available to bowl in the Test after not being used during the two warm-up matches.
“We’ve been through a lot as a side and it’s not going to be an easy tour.”
“He’s got pace and he’s very aggressive. A guy who’s going to be an enforcer,” Holder said of Joseph, who can bowl 145kph/90mph consistently. The added responsibility underscores Joseph’s growing maturity after making his Test debut as a 19-year-old in 2016.
“I was actually quite surprised that he’s 26 … we celebrated his birthday on tour recently,” Holder said. “It’s been an amazing time, it’s great to see him fit and healthy. He’s obviously progressed a lot because he was very reserved, and didn’t do much in the dressing room. He was around his teammates. Gard is very comfortable, one of the more experienced campaigners when it comes to all formats of cricket.”
“I think Jayden has a lot of skill … he has swing and control. I think those are two of his biggest qualities,” Holder said. “Maybe not a lot of swing in those conditions but he can get a lot of seam movement.”
“If you look at the core of the Test side, I think we’ve been together for the last five, six years,” Holder said. “I think it’s really important compared to the other sides… maybe a little bit more chopping and changing.
“I think our longer format cricket has really developed, so that’s a really good sign and a lot of our players are developing.”
“It’s a tour that people can make their own,” Holder said. “We’ve been through a lot as a side and it’s not going to be an easy tour.”