Australia thrash West Indies by 352 runs to take 4-0 lead in series


MELBOURNE, Reuters

Australia thrashed West Indies by 352 runs in the fourth test on Friday after an embarrassing mismatch which gave the home team a 4-0 lead in the five-match series. Set an improbable 462 for victory West Indies, who began the day at 10 for three, lost two further cheap wickets before stumbling to 109 all out. Fast bowler Jason Gillespie took 6-40 off 17 overs, giving him nine wickets for the match.

The victory extended Australia’s record winning streak to 14 and represented another triumph for captain Steve Waugh who returned after injury to score 121 not out in the first innings and win the man-of-the-match award.

“It’s a very good side and we’re playing better every test,” Waugh said. “It’s going to be hard for the West Indies to pick themselves up. Our challenge is to keep ourselves going and we’ve already talked about that in the dressing room.”

Australia named an unchanged side for the fifth test in Sydney starting on Tuesday while West Indies captain Jimmy Adams said the tourists would discuss their lineup on Monday. Adams said taking on the Australians again so soon would be a daunting assignment. “It’s not going to be easy but it’s something we have have to face and we have to try and deal with it,” he said. The Caribbean new agency CANA said St Vincent fast bowler Cameron Cuffy would replace injured fast bowler Mervyn Dillon in the West Indies’ squad for next month’s triangular one-day series with Australia and Zimbabwe. Dillon, West Indies’ leading wicket taker with 16 in the series, has been suffering from a nagging ankle injury which has forced him to take pain-killing injections. After play began on Friday, Gillespie removed opener Sherwin Campbell for six and Adams for a golden duck, both caught in slips, from successive balls in his ninth over. In his next over he had nightwatchman Colin Stuart lbw for four with a slower ball and West Indies were 23 for six before Marlon Samuels, last man out for 46, and wicketkeeper Ridley Jacobs (23) added a face-saving 54 off 97 balls for the seventh wicket.