West Indies issue warning with impressive Australia triumph

Nicholas Pooran in action for the West Indies. File photo

The Caribbean side looked in good touch as they eased past the Aussies courtesy of a strong performance with the bat.

The West Indies showed some ominous signs as the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup co-hosts registered an impressive 35-run victory over Australia in their warm-up fixture in Trinidad on Thursday.

Nicholas Pooran was the star of the show with a superb 75 as the West Indies posted a massive total of 257/4 at Queens Park Oval and that score proved too much for Australia as the Caribbean side cruised home to victory ahead of their opening match at the T20 World Cup against Papua New Guinea on Sunday.

Pooran smashed a whopping eight sixes during his 25-ball stay and skipper Rovman Powell (52), left-hander Sherfane Rutherford (47*) and opener Johnson Charles (40) also got in the act as the two-time T20 World Cup champions delighted their home crowd with some scintillating power-hitting.

All of Australia’s bowlers felt the wrath of the West Indies’ top-order, with first-choice spinner Adam Zampa conceding 62 runs from his four overs while picking up two wickets.

Australia put up a decent show in reply despite missing a host of key players, with Josh Inglis (55), Nathan Ellis (39) and Ashton Agar (28) looking the most dangerous in what was always going to be a difficult chase as the 2021 T20 World Cup winners finished with 222/7 in their final warm-up fixture.

Spinner Gudakesh Motie (2/31) and tall pacer Alzarri Joseph (2/44) picking up a pair of wickets each for the hosts.

In the other completed warm-up fixture on Thursday, Namibia narrowly defeated Papua New Guinea by three runs (DLS method) following a rain-affected contest in Tarouba.

Papua New Guinea could only muster 109/7 from their 20 overs, but an inspired spell from Assad Vala (2/17) helped keep Namibia in touch and the African nation were sitting precariously at 93/6 in the 17th over when the match was called off at the Brian Lara Cricket Academy. – icc-cricket.com

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