| Matthew Hayden
Port-of-Spain: Australian opener Matthew Hayden has been surprised by the West Indian move to field just three frontline bowlers, all fast, on a slow pitch in the second Test.
After succeeding in claiming just seven Australian wickets in two innings, the home team was struggling to avoid defeat at the end of Day 4 Tuesday.
“I think they’ve got to have a spinner,” Hayden said. “We are playing on pitches which are deteriorating a lot. If it was me, I would be certainly picking spinners.
“We’ve played two spinners, which goes against the grain of the fabric of Australian cricket where we play three pacers and a spinner or four pacers,” said the opener.
“We’ve got a very aggressive batting line-up, six guys at the top of their form and it’s hard to see them taking 20 wickets,” said Hayden.
Australia called a halt to their second innings 25 minutes before the tea interval, a declaration which surprised their opponents. “We thought they were looking for something around 500,” said West Indies coach Gus Logie.
But Hayden said the West Indies still faced an enormous task after the home team reached 107 for three at close.
“It’s going to take an incredible effort from the West Indies to survive. We saw a lot of opportunities in the last half hour, the ball’s turning, there’s bounce, it’s pretty nasty really.
Logie defends bowlers
Logie defended his under-fire attack after they again failed to bowl out Australia. Australia, who made 576 for four in their first innings, declared for the second time in the match at 238 for three, setting the home team 407 to win.
The hosts have bowled out the tourists just once in four attempts this series and there has been widespread criticism of the decision to pick only three frontline bowlers.
“As a coach, I believe in the players we have,” Logie said. “This morning we got them down to less than three runs an over. I think the bowlers did a good job to stop them from running away with the game.
“They have worked very hard in the nets. Things have not worked out for them but it’s not for want of trying.”