World Champions West Indies will look for a repeat of their ICC World T20 2012 semi-final performance when they meet Australia in today’s third match of the ICC World T20 2014 tournament.
Two years ago, West Indies made over 200 in their 20 overs to hammer the Aussies by 74 runs as they went on to win the title.
Skipper Darren Sammy said yesterday that they will be looking for similar dominance when the two teams meet at the Sher-e-Bangla Stadium.
First ball is 3.30 p.m. (5.30 a.m. Eastern Caribbean Time/4.30 a.m. Jamaica Time).
“Once we play to our full potential—so far in this tournament, we have not played to our full potential—we will be very destructive. We were destructive in that semi-final last World Cup,” Sammy said.
The captain was speaking to reporters after a full training session yesterday morning at the Dhaka Academy.
“I expect a tough match. It will be a good contest. We have Samuel Badree and Sunil Narine are Number two and Number one in the world in T20 bowling rankings cricket at the moment. Badree has been getting wickets up front for us in the first six overs. It is something we are hoping he will hopefully continue doing. It won’t be an easy game.”
Looking ahead to today, the captain added: “The Australians are a good side. We give them that respect. But at the end of the day, it is another cricket match where it is a contest between bat and ball. The team that handles the pressure better and executes properly normally comes out on top. And we are hoping that it will be us tomorrow.”
Australian all-rounder James Faulkner has already added spice to the important contest after Australian media quoted him as saying he does not particularly like the West Indies team.
“The Australians normally have a lot to say,” Sammy told reporters when asked for a reaction.
“We (are) just here to play cricket. I think James is the only cricketer who does not love West Indies. I could safely say that West Indies are the second favourite team for the fans (after their home team).
“It doesn’t bother us. Talk is talk. We just got to walk the talk out there on the field. He can say all he wants. We’re not bothered by it,” said the all-rounder.
Sammy also touched on the form of openers Dwayne Smith and Chris Gayle. In the opening match against India they added a solid partnership and then posted 97 in the victory over Bangladesh.
“Chris is hitting the ball well, (Dwayne) Smith is hitting the ball well. They have put on good runs. Chris has not been his explosive self that we are used to and we still scored 170 against Bangladesh. Once we back ourselves and play like we know how to play T20, things will go according to plan.”
West Indies: Darren Sammy (Captain), Samuel Badree, Dwayne Bravo, Johnson Charles, Sheldon Cottrell, Andre Fletcher, Chris Gayle, Sunil Narine, Denesh Ramdin, Ravi Rampaul, Andre Russell, Marlon Samuels, Krishmar Santokie, Lendl Simmons, Dwayne Smith.
Australia: George Bailey (Captain), Doug Bollinger, Daniel Christian, Nathan Coulter-Nile, James Faulkner, Aaron Finch, Brad Haddin, BJ Hodge, Brad Hogg, Glen Maxwell, James Muirhead, Mitchell Starc, David Warner, Shane Watson, Cameron White.