T20 World Cup; West Indies batters carve up Australia in warm-up

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Australia’s bowling attack received a World Cup warning from the West Indies when Nicholas Pooran played like mad with the bat during the final warm-up before the start of the tournament in the Caribbean next week.

All-rounder Marcus Stoinis finally joined the team in Trinidad, bringing the total number of local team members to ten. However, he was unable to play due to a mix-up of luggage during transport, meaning that support staff were again forced to play on the field and only two top-class fast bowlers were able to bowl at Queen’s Park Oval.

The Australians’ lack of preparation compared to the Windies, who had just won a T20 series in Jamaica 3-0 against South Africa, was clearly evident.

Apart from the opening win against Namibia on Wednesday, spin star Adam Zampa had not played a game since the end of the T20 series in New Zealand on February 25 and conceded 21 runs in his first over and 22 runs in his last amid a home attack.

Fellow slow bowler Ashton Agar’s previous game was a one-day game for WA, also in February, and he managed 37 runs in his first two overs, finishing with 1-58 from four runs as the Windies scored 4-257 runs, including 18 sixes.

Zampa’s final scores of 2-62 were among his worst ever.

The huge total came after an early blitzkrieg from Pooran that included eight sixes and five fours before scoring 75 off just 25 balls and sending the home team packing at 2-128.

Then Rovman Powell (52 from 25 balls with four sixes) joined in the fun with the big shots and left the Australian bowlers stumped.

Josh Hazlewood, who skipped the IPL due to the birth of his first child and played 2-5 against Namibia on Wednesday, was not spared and hit two sixes in his last over, giving him a score of 0-55.

Nathan Ellis, the only other available frontline fast bowler in Trinidad, who had played only one game during his time with the Punjab Kings in India, showed his worth at the end of the innings.

He conceded only four runs in the 18th over, but conceded fours in the onslaught of the 20th over with the last two balls.

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