Monday 20 November 2017 / 02:56 AM

Aus v WI: 1st Test – Day 1 wrap

Woeful Windies walloped

World cricket’s worst fears were realised as the West Indies were smashed around Blundstone Arena to the tune of 3/438 on Day 1 of the first Test against Australia. Starting promisingly to have the hosts at 3/121 after Shannon Gabriel bowled Joe Burns for 33 and Jomel Warrican claimed David Warner (64) and Steve Smith (10), the tourists had no answer to the onslaught of Adam Voges and Shaun Marsh.

Australia accumulated their runs at almost five an over, with pace spearhead Jerome Taylor going for 6.33 per over. Kemar Roach was little better with 0/64 off 11 overs, but it was the lack of venom and variety that was most striking about the Windies limp attack.

Voges, Marsh cement spots

The ‘flat-track bully’ lines have made an appearance already, but it’s not Voges’ or Marsh’s fault their opponents are terrible – and the WA duo took full toll on the opening day at Hobart. Voges plundered 174 not out from 204 balls, while the oft-maligned Marsh crafted an unbeaten 139 as the pair combined for a 317-run stand that could smash all kinds of records on Day 2. After his crucial knock against the Kiwis in Adelaide, Marsh’s big score has sealed his place in the team for the short-term, while Voges has well and truly proved he belongs in the side.

Captaincy weighing on Smith’s batting?

He’s not exactly in a slump and is well established as one of the best batsmen in the world, but Steve Smith has been significantly below his lofty standards in his first home summer as Australia’s permanent captain. Smith managed a sparkling 138 on a lifeless WACA pitch to lift his series average against New Zealand to a respectable 46.83, before falling for just 10 in his first knock against the lowly Windies. The feeling that he is going to dominate every time he walks to the crease is starting to dissipate, and the question needs to be asked if the extra responsibilities are beginning to affect his batting form – as it has for many skippers before him.

Overstepping the mark

One moment summed up the Windies’ incompetence more than any other: Shannon Gabriel’s comical no-ball. Gabriel was carted for 59 off his 10 overs, although he did nab his side’s first wicket.

Stud of the day

Voges’ highest Test score (and counting) has come at a strike-rate of 85.29, plundering 19 boundaries in his 174 not out. Authoritative from the outset, Voges reached his century in 100 balls. In the fine tradition of Mike Hussey and Chris Rogers of good things coming to those who wait, it was the 36-year-old’s third ton in his 11th Test appearance.

Looking ahead

The points of interest on Day 2 are what further records Voges and Marsh can break, and when Smith will declare. A heavy defeat for the tourists inside three days looms unless they can show some real defiance with the bat in hand – but Hazlewood, Pattinson, Siddle and Mitch Marsh will be fizzing for a chance to do some damage after sitting in the stands for a day and a half.

 

Fun facts

  • The Voges-Marsh stand of 317 not out is second only to Michael Clarke and Ricky Ponting’s 352 against Pakistan in 2010 as the highest partnership in Hobart.
  • Voges’ 100-ball century was the quickest ever in a Hobart Test, beating Adam Gilchrist’s 110-ball ton in 1999.
  • David Warner has made 11 scores of 50-plus in 2015, setting a new record for an Australian opener in a calendar year.  

 

Around the world

New Zealand were in a similarly dominant mood on Day 1 of the first Test against Sri Lanka, despite being sent in to bat on a green top in Dunedin. Martin Guptill – after an ordinary tour of Australia – smashed 156, his third Test ton and first in over four years. The brilliant Kane Williamson notched 88, while Brendon McCullum – another who was below par in Australia – hit a trademark 75 off just 57 balls, with 58 of his runs coming in boundaries. The Black Caps finished the day on 8/409 after Sri Lanka’s bowlers fought back admirably during the last session, taking five wickets for 65 runs. 

 

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About the author

Will Evans

CBS’s Editor-in-Chief and lead rugby league, union and cricket writer, Will is a Christchurch-based freelancer, also writing for Big League and Rugby League Review magazines, and The New Daily website. Will has written four rugby league books.

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