Aussie relief over full-strength Windies' tour
Australian cricket was relieved to learn a full-strength West Indies touring squad would be heading Australia later this month, Cricket Australia said on Tuesday.cricket Updated: Nov 03, 2009 11:34 IST
Australian cricket was relieved to learn a full-strength West Indies touring squad would be heading Australia later this month, Cricket Australia said on Tuesday.
Reinstated captain Chris Gayle and fellow senior players, Shivnarine Chanderpaul, Ramnaresh Sarwan and Dwayne Bravo have been included in the touring team after missing a home series against Bangladesh and the Champions Trophy over a contractual dispute with the West Indies Cricket Board.
The West Indies, currently ranked eighth of the nine Test-playing nations, are scheduled to tour Australia for three Tests, Twenty20 and one-day matches from this month.
"We've seen in recent times where a West Indies side has struggled against Bangladesh and others and it's a great relief to know they're going to be full strength," CA chief executive James Sutherland told reporters.
"I'm sure they'll put up a really good performance this summer.
"I think they'll have a renewed spirit after coming back and having had a bit of time out of the game, it's a summer of cricket that we're really looking forward to."
Cricket Australia had faced a revenue hit if a weakened West Indies side had toured, but Sutherland said it was more significant that Australian fans would have been denied the chance to see the best players in action.
"What we can look forward to now is a fantastic atmosphere at matches," he said.
"Those three Test matches against the West Indies -- in Brisbane, Adelaide and Perth -- are always, no matter who's playing, great traditional events and people come from all over the state and even all over the country to attend those matches.
"So no matter who's playing there's a great element of tradition about these games, so we expect good crowds.
"But the fact now that the West Indies are full strength means that if there was any doubt, I think that's all removed now."