Australia bat, and play Neser, Boland; West Indies hand debuts to Mindley, Thomas

Stand-in Australia captain Steven Smith won the toss and elected to bat against a revamped West Indies line-up in the day-night Test in Adelaide. Australia too were forced to make changes from the side that claimed the first Test by 164 runs.

They had a new-look attack, with regular captain Pat Cummins failing to overcome a quad strain he picked up during the first Test, while quick Josh Hazlewood was ruled out with general soreness after West Indies batted for more than 200 overs across the two innings in Perth.

Scott Boland returned for the first time since his heroics during last summer’s Ashes, where he took 18 wickets in three Tests at a remarkable average of 9.55. Also, seamer Michael Neser was a late inclusion for Hazlewood, as he got add to his sole Test appearance against England in Adelaide almost exactly 12 months ago.

Neser has been in good form for Queensland in the Sheffield Shield, with 24 wickets at 14.5 in five matches during the ongoing domestic season.

In another parallel to last summer, former captain Smith takes the reins from Cummins like he did in the Ashes Test in Adelaide.

Meanwhile, West Indies fast bowlers Kemar Roach and Jayden Seales failed to overcome injuries sustained in the first Test. Debutant Marquino Mindley was included just 48 hours after arriving from Jamaica, while fellow quick Anderson Phillip would be playing only the second Test of his career, having made his debut against Bangladesh mid-year.
Middle-order batter Devon Thomas also debuts, and replaces allrounder Kyle Mayers, who strained his right teres major muscle in the first Test. The visitors were also without Nkrumah Bonner, who was ruled out due to the concussion he suffered in Perth, as Shamarh Brooks took his side in the XI.

West Indies’ hopes of a series-levelling victory appear more difficult, having lost all three of their previous day-night Tests, the last of which came over four years ago. In contrast, pioneers Australia have mastered the pink ball with an unblemished record from ten matches, including six at the Adelaide Oval.

Australia: 1 David Warner, 2 Usman Khawaja, 3 Marnus Labuschagne, 4 Steven Smith (capt), 5 Travis Head, 6 Cameron Green, 7 Alex Carey (wk), 8 Michael Neser, 9 Mitchell Starc, 10 Nathan Lyon, 11 Scott Boland

West Indies: 1 Kraigg Brathwaite (capt), 2 Tagenarine Chanderpaul, 3 Shamarh Brooks, 4 Jermaine Blackwood, 5 Devon Thomas, 6 Jason Holder, 7 Joshua Da Silva (wk), 8 Roston Chase, 9 Alzarri Joseph, 10 Anderson Phillip, 11 Marquino Mindley

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