Roseau - West Indies squandered a promising position, losing their last nine
wickets for 85 runs to be dismissed for 148 in their first innings on the
opening day of the first Test against Australia in Dominica on Wednesday.
At stumps, Australia were 85 for three in reply, the in-form Steve Smith and
debutant Adam Voges set to resume on the second morning after the home bowlers
battled hard to prevent the visitors from completely dominating day one.
Josh Hazlewood and Mitchell Johnson led the rout of the West Indies with
three wickets each on a surface that held few terrors for the batsmen.
Fellow pacer Mitchell Starc chimed in with two scalps as the bowlers were
complemented by excellence in the field, Australian captain Michael Clarke
leading the way with three catches in the slip cordon.
"We bowled well as a group today on a pitch that offered a bit of seam
movement throughout the day," said Hazlewood.
"I suppose I'm a bit luckier than the other guys who have just arrived
as I got to play in that one warm-up match to help get accustomed to the
West Indies skipper, Denesh Ramdin, may be regretting the decision to bat
first on winning the toss but the continuous clatter of Caribbean wickets had
as much to do with indisciplined batting as aggressive, persevering bowling.
Ramdin himself was the seventh wicket to fall in the midst of the afternoon
capitulation, a hopeful 30-run partnership with Jason Holder ended by the pace
and accuracy of Johnson.
Despite an encouraging platform at 63 for one, the home slipped into deep
trouble by losing five wickets for 28 runs either side of the lunch interval.
Experienced left-hander Darren Bravo took 14 deliveries to get off the mark
and was just getting into stride when an attempt to play a forcing shot through
the off side produced an outside edge for Clarke to snare an excellent catch.
It gave Nathan Lyon his first wicket and left him three away from surpassing
Hugh Trumble as Australia's most successful Test off-spinner ever.
Shai Hope, Brathwaite's opening partner, played a few expansive drives but
chased one wide delivery too many off Johnson for Marsh to take the diving catch
at gully and send the batsman back to the pavilion for what proved to be the
innings top score of 36.
"We didn't make the most of the opportunity at all," said Hope.
"The pitch is a bit slow but it's still decent to bat on. We'll have to
be consistent with our lines and lengths tomorrow to stay in the match."
Shane Dowrich was the first wicket to fall after lunch, playing on to
Hazlewood, who then promptly removed Jermaine Blackwood to another Clarke
Marlon Samuels, the most experienced West Indies player following the
omission of Shivnarine Chanderpaul, played cautiously for 40 minutes only to
fall to a top-edged hook off Starc for just seven, the irrepressible Hazlewood
judging the catch well at fine leg.
Voges, Australia's 11th oldest debutant in the traditional form of the game
at the age of 35, had his moment of the day in taking an excellent diving catch
to account for Jerome Taylor off the leg-spin of Smith, a day after the
part-time bowler's 26th birthday.
It was Taylor who removed David Warner at the start of Australia's reply.
Jason Holder accounted for Shaun Marsh and West Indies hopes were lifted
further when Clarke edged an attempted cut off leg-spinner Devendra Bishoo into
the gloves of Ramdin, giving the wicketkeeper his 200th dismissal in Test