The First Test – Australia v West Indies, Day 1: Hard to get excited


“The Cricketer” by Kate Birrell


When was the last time you were so disinterested in the Australian men’s Test team? Can you ever remember not being excited about the prospects of a Test series against the Windies? Has the saturation level of (mainly white ball) cricket so desensitised us that we can’t even find it in ourselves to ‘watch the Test’? Can you name 6 members of the Windies side? How about 4? Can you recall any media coverage of the build-up to the First Test? Are you even sure where it’s being played?


Amazing, isn’t it? Perhaps even sacrilegious in a country where Summer is spelt ‘c-r-i-c-k-e-t’. What’s worse, I doubt that I’m the only one feeling this way. Even the Almanac’s most dedicated cricket writer ‘Citrus’ Bob Utber hasn’t posted anything so far!


What’s your theory?


For the record, Australia won the toss and elected to bat on a pitch with a fair covering of grass. Warner went cheaply before Khawaja and Labuschagne put on 142. Khawaja, continuing his fine vein of form since being promoted to open, went for a well compiled 65 to bring Smith to the crease. By stumps it was 2/293 with Labuschagne on 154* and Smith 59* in an unbroken stand of 142 for the third wicket. The Windies looked disinterested at times, the bowlers lacked the sustained menace expected from a West Indian team and the field placings were, at times, difficult to follow. A couple of hard chances went down which didn’t help. Advantage Australia (understatement of the day!). Another day or two like this and it will be a task and a half to sell tickets for the rest of this match and those to follow. Today’s official attendance was a tick under 11000 but it looked less. That’s pretty ordinary for a Test match in Perth.


It’s hard to get excited. It most certainly is not all happening!


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About Ian Hauser

A relaxed, Noosa-based retiree with a (very) modest sporting CV. A loyal Queenslander, especially when it comes to cricket and rugby league. Enjoys travel, coffee and cake, reading, and has been known to appreciate a glass or three of wine. One of Footy Almanac's online editors who enjoys the occasional editing opportunity to assist aspiring writers.


  1. I know I’m showing my age Ian but I reckon you’ve nailed it. Saturation combined with too much money for players chasing the ‘hit and giggle’ around the world. Maybe the next generation of players will be more likeable but right now there’s serious cultural disconnect between them and us the punters.

  2. Hayden Kelly says

    Tend to agree re saturation what was the 3 one day games against England about !
    I have been watching as a lover of test cricket but last night i experienced the cultural disconnect . Captain Pat called for DRS on an LBW off his own bowling and I sat there and willing and wanting the review to fail .
    Ussie , Marnus and Gazza aside I can’t warm to the current group .

  3. Hi Ian, the things that disappointed me about that first day were firstly the sucker ball that Warner gifted his wicket to the Windies. Encouraged by that, the Windies continued to bowl wide way too often, not making the Australians play thus making for a mostly boring day. Thankfully day 2 was much better.

  4. roger lowrey says

    I don’t argue with your general thesis big fella but hey, we are only half way through Advent and Advent is all about hope.

    Let us therefore hope the RSA encounters are more engaging.


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