Australia vs West Indies: Sean Abbott leads AUS to series deciding 83-run win against WI
Just like at the MCG two days ago where Australia romped to an eight-wicket win in the first game, West Indies top order stuttered against pace in their chase.
Sean Abbott exhibited his allrounder skills and powered Australia to a series deciding 83-run win over the West Indies in the second one-day international on Sunday. Abbott made a better than a run-a-ball 69 and lifted Australia to a competitive 258-9 at his home ground after West Indies won the toss and opted to field.
The tall fast bowler then struck inside the batting powerplay before he picked up key wicket of Keacy Carty, who top-scored with 40, in his return spell to finish with 3-40 as West Indies was held to 175 all out in 43.3 overs.
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“We thought 220 would be competitive but were very competitive with partnerships, taking it over 250,” Abbott said. “It’s a really good (Australian) attack. It’s such a good environment. I’ve been enjoying it. Love getting out there and playing in front of a home crowd.”
Just like at the MCG two days ago where Australia romped to an eight-wicket win in the first game, the West Indies top order stuttered against pace in their run-chase. Abbott grabbed a superb catch at mid-off when Alick Athanaze tried to go hard at Aaron Hardie and Jason Greaves was well caught by debutante Will Sutherland over his head before Abbott had the West Indies reeling at 34-3 inside the first 10 overs.
Carty and captain Shai Hope (29) rebuilt the chase with a 53-run stand before both fell in Josh Hazlewood's (3-43) and Abbott’s return spells with the West Indies skipper losing his off stump to a brilliant Hazlewood ball that nipped back at the right-hander.
Sutherland picked up 2-28 and Adam Zampa finished off the West Indies timid batting when he had No. 10 Gudakesh Motie trapped leg before wicket in his final over.
Earlier, Australian top-order batters couldn’t covert good starts before the home side was rescued by Abbott’s career-best ODI knock. Spinners Moti (3-28) and Roston Chase (0-40) conceded just two boundaries in 20 overs between them before Abbott’s countercharge against the fast bowlers.
Jake Fraser-McGurk had an eventful five deliveries on his ODI debut as he smacked a four and a six before edging Alzarri Joseph (2-74) in the first over and Josh Inglis (nine) was smartly caught by Roston Chase at point.
Fraser-McGurk made his debut in place of Travis Head, who has been released from the squad for the remaining limited-overs games to rest ahead of the test series in New Zealand starting in late February. Sutherland made his debut and replaced fast bowler Xavier Bartlett, while Hazlewood returned in place of Lance Morris.
Cameron Green (33) didn’t hold back and smashed Joseph for three consecutive boundaries down the ground before captain Steven Smith dragged Matthew Forde back onto his stumps as the West Indies pacers kept striking at regular intervals inside the powerplay.
Green and Marnus Labuschagne (26) left Australia in a spot of bother at 91-5 but Australia’s inexperienced middle-order showed plenty of batting muscle. Hardie (26) and Matthew Short (41) combined for a half-century stand before Sutherland added further 57 runs with Abbott to give Australia a challenging total on a tricky wicket.
Abbott smashed two successive sixes to Romario Shepherd (2-50) before he got deceived by the fast bowler’s slower delivery and played on to his stumps, but his half-century proved enough to give Australia a 2-0 lead in the series. The last match of the series will be played at Canberra on Tuesday before both teams compete in a three-match T20 series, starting at Hobart on Friday.
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