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Daniel Brigham: Australia to bounce back again

November 25th, 2009 by Daniel Brigham in International, west indies

November 1993: Nelson Mandela ratified South Africa’s first democratic constitution, John Major and John Smith were arguing across the Commons floor and Norwich City gloriously dumped Bayern Munich out of the UEFA Cup. It was also the last time Australia had to bounce back from a home Test-series defeat. Now, 16 years later, Australia will be attempting to do so again. It’s been a long time.

Australia’s win over New Zealand in 1993-94 started a run of 27 undefeated home series that was ended last winter by South Africa. This time the opponents are West Indies, and that doesn’t really help anyone wanting to watch Australia continue their losing streak. Which some people might think is a shame. 

Not only will Australia win convincingly but they also won’t lose two successive home series, which hasn’t happened since 1985. If they were taking on Sri Lanka, India, Pakistan or even England, that could have been a real possibility. And just imagine Mitchell Johnson’s sad face then. Imagine what his mum would say.

As it is, Australia’s batting line-up will destroy the West Indies attack. Don’t expect to see collapses like you did at Lord’s and The Oval. Not at home and not against Sulieman Benn. Do expect Ricky Ponting to banish his Ashes nightmare with more runs than Brendan Nash, Dinesh Ramdin and debutant Adrian Barath combined.

Do not expect Chris Gayle and Ramnaresh Sarwan (averages of 28.90 and 32.50 against Australia) to help out Shivnarine Chanderpaul, who will inevitably add to his four centuries in 15 Tests against the Aussies. Do expect Ben Hilfenhaus to blow away an impatient batting line-up.

Don’t expect to see Ponting looking perplexed and shaking his head in disbelief. Which some people might think is a shame.

Daniel Brigham is assistant editor of The Wisden Cricketer

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