Twenty20 Cricket: West Indies vs Australia in semis
Australia hope to remove big-hitter Chris Gayle early to put the West Indies under pressure during the second semi-final of the World Twenty20 in Colombo on Friday.
The left-hander holds the key to his team’s batting success and Australian captain George Bailey said it was important not to let Gayle settle down at the crease.
“Their (West Indies) batting is no doubt their strength,” Bailey said after his team’s training session on Thursday. “If you can knock Gayle over early it really does put pressure on the rest of their batsmen to step up.”
Gayle hit 54 to help West Indies to 191-8 against Australia in the preliminary league, before Shane Watson scored a 21-ball 41 to steer his team home via the Duckworth-Lewis method in the rain-affected match.
Gayle also smashed 58 during a 103-run opening stand with Johnson Charles to set up a 15-run win over defending champions England in the Super Eights in Pallekele.
But when the opener fell for two against Sri Lanka, the West Indies crumbled for a paltry 129 to lose by nine wickets.
Bailey, smarting against the unexpected 32-run defeat by Pakistan on Tuesday, wanted an aggressive attitude by his team against the West Indies bowlers, even if it costs Australia a place in the final.