Skip to content
GO TO bet365 Sports
Adelaide Oval
  1. Cricket
  2. Australian Cricket

Australia v West Indies: First Test preview

Australia begin the post-David Warner Test era against West Indies at the Adelaide Oval, with Steven Smith set to play a central role in proceedings as he moves to the top of the batting order.

Warner called time on his Test career at the end of the series against Pakistan, but Smith has removed the need to draft in a new opener to partner Usman Khawaja by opting to take up the challenge himself.

All-rounder Cameron Green is set to take up the vacant number four slot, while the tourists appear likely to hand debuts to three players included in their youthful squad.

WhatAustralia v West Indies, 1st Test
WhereAdelaide Oval
When17th-21st January 2024
How to watchChannel 7, Foxtel, Kayo
OddsAustralia 1.10, Draw 11.00, West Indies 19.00

Smith ready for fresh challenge

Smith has never previously opened the batting in either Test or first-class cricket, but he is confident that he can adapt to fill the gap left by the retirement of Warner, allowing Green the opportunity to reclaim his red-ball spot.

He told reporters: "I thought, why don't I put my hand up and have a crack up top and that way you can get Cam in and you're playing your six best batters, so hopefully it works out.

"I am excited. I like facing the newer ball."

Smith certainly has previous success against the Windies to draw from, with his seven Test outings against the men from the Caribbean having seen him total 752 runs at an astonishing average of 150.40, with a top score of 200 not out in Perth just over a year ago.

Smith is available at 4.75 to be Top 1st Innings Batter at the Adelaide Oval, with Green priced up at 6.50 in the same market.

Matt Renshaw is the batter drafted into the squad for the clash with the Windies, but he looks likely to miss out on a place in the final XI, which is set to be the same as the one which feature din the final Test against Pakistan, except for the replacement of Warner with Green.

Skipper Pat Cummins took 5-61 in the first innings of that win at the SCG and he is 5.50 to be Top 1st Innings Bowler in Adelaide, with fellow seamer Mitchell Starc heading the market at 5.00.

The hosts will certainly head into the series opener with confidence, having not lost a Test to the West Indies since 2003 and having routed the tourists by 419 runs at the Adelaide Oval as recently as December 2022.

Brathwaite looking to new blood

West Indies captain Kraigg Brathwaite and his colleagues have at least had the luxury of having been in place in Adelaide Oval for nearly two weeks ahead of the opening Test.

A three-day warm-up game against a Cricket Australia XI gave them some positives to take into the challenge of trying to fend off the Baggy Greens, including Brathwaite himself registering a half-century.

Kavem Hodge and Justin Greaves impressed in both innings, making 52 and 99, and 65 and 41 respectively to seemingly book themselves in for Test debuts.

Wicketkeeper-batter Joshua Da Silva also impressed in making 105 when opening in the second innings, leaving Brathwaite with another option at the top of the order alongside himself and Tagenarine Chanderpaul.

With the ball much will depend on whether the experienced Kemar Roach is able to make early breakthroughs, while Shamar Joseph is expected to debut alongside namesake and fellow pacer Alzarri Joseph.

Roach is 8.50 to be Top 1st Innings Bowler and he will be desperate to improve on a record in Australia which currently reads eight wickets taken in seven Tests at an average of 90.62.

Related Articles

bet365 uses cookies

We use cookies to deliver a better and more personalised service. For more information, see our Cookie Policy