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Australia v West Indies 2nd T20I preview: Johnson call sparks excitement

The three-match T20I series between Australia and West Indies got off to a cracking start in Hobart and now the two sides move on to Adeliade for the second match on Sunday.

The hosts won the high-scoring series opener at the Blundstone Arena on Friday by 11 runs and have reacted to a close call after racking up 213-7 from their 20 overs by calling up left-arm pacer Spencer Johnson.

It was a game where both sets of opening batters flourished, with David Warner blasting 70 from 36 balls before announcing that he would call time on his 20-over international career following the T20 World Cup later this year.

WhatAustralia v West Indies, 2nd T20I
WhereAdelaide Oval, Adelaide
When19:00 (AEDT) Sunday 11th February 2024
How to watchKayo, Foxtel
OddsAustralia 1.36, West Indies 3.20

Johnson set for home international bow

Having initially been left out of the Baggy Greens squad for the 20-over action, tearaway left-arm quick Johnson has been added to the party ahead of the potential series clincher.

The 28-year-old Adelaide native has played three times for Australia to date, but those all came away In India and South Africa, so a home bow is on the cards unless something dramatic happens.

Johnson has enjoyed something of a swift rise in the game, having impressed in The Hundred in England and also in the Big Bash League, helping Brisbane Heat to take the title in the season just ended.

Johnson excelled in the knockout stages of the BBL, taking nine wickets across three matches, including 4-26 in the final victory over Sydney Sixers.

He is clearly a player in with a chance of selection for the T20 World Cup in the USA and West Indies and can be backed at 4.50 to be top Australia bowler on Sunday, while he is 15.00 to be named as Player of the Match.

Turning to the bat, things worked out almost perfectly of the hosts in Hobart as Warner and Josh Inglis added 93 for the first wicket, before Tim David and Matthew Wade struck some decisive late blows.

David seems to have settled into his middle-order role after being tried higher up the line-up with little success, thrashing 37 not out from 17 balls in the series opener.

He remains well down the market at 9.50 to be top Australia batter in Adelaide, with veteran Warner the hot fancy at 3.60.

Windies can take heart from defeat

Having fielded a very inexperienced side in the recent ODI series, West Indies have a number of players back in the fold for the 20-over match-ups and several of them impressed in Tasmania.

All-rounder Andre Russell took three wickets, while Brandon King and John Charles put on 89 for the first wicket and former skipper Jason Holder blasted 34 not out from 15 balls to almost pull off a famous victory.

So, while the second T20I is now a must-win to avoid a series loss with one match still to play, the tourists will know that they can be competitive and are more than capable of levelling the series in Adelaide.

None of Nicholas Pooran, Shai Hope nor captain Rovman Powell made a big impression with the bat in Hobart, but should one or more of them fire in South Australia, then the home bowling attack could be in for some punishment.

Certainly, you cannot write off the man from the Caribbean, who have won their last two T20I series, against no lesser teams than England and India.

They may want to consider moving Holder up the batting order depending on how the match is progressing.

He is an interesting outside prospect at 34.00 to be Team - Top Batter in Adelaide, while he is 17.00 to be named as Player of the Match.

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