Marsh ready for Australian debut

Source -

Australia will unleash uncapped opener Shaun Marsh on the West Indies attack in the first Twenty20 international to be played in the Caribbean.

Marsh was one of the stars of the recent Indian Premier League, scoring 616 runs at a strike rate of 139.

And the 24-year-old is set to make his Australia debut in Barbados on Friday.

West Indies also have new faces in their 14-man squad in batsmen Andre Fletcher and Williams Perkins and teenage fast bowler Kemar Roach.

But they will again be without skipper Chris Gayle, the only batsman to score a hundred in a Twenty20 international, who is still struggling with a groin problem.

Ramnaresh Sarwan will lead the side as he did in the first two matches of the recent Test series, which Australia won 2-0.

And there is plenty at stake for the home side with a West Indies XI set to play England in a 10m winner-takes-all Twenty20 match backed by Antigua-based billionaire Sir Allen Stanford later this year.

There is plenty of room for improvement by the home side in the shortest form of the game as they lost both matches at last year's inaugural ICC World Twenty20 in South Africa.

And it will be vital that their attack does not let Marsh, the son of former Australia opener Geoff, get going at the top of the order.

"I can't wait for the game to start. I feel the emotion. I can't wait for the game to start and to represent my country," said Marsh.

"This is a great opportunity for me. I have got to grab it with both hands and do all the things I have been doing right over the last 12 months. Hopefully, I can do well."

He added: "The IPL was fantastic for me. It was a great lead-up for this trip to the West Indies. I am just going to go out there and enjoy playing with Ricky Ponting, Michael Clarke and guys like that. It will be an honour to walk out on the field with them."

He is not the only IPL player in their team, with Shane Watson, James Hopes, Cameron White, David Hussey and wicketkeeper Luke Ronchi having also arrived for the second half of their tour.

Ronchi will make his international debut alongside Marsh, in order to allow first-choice keeper Brad Haddin to rest an injured finger. The tourists have also left out all-rounder Andrew Symonds, who has a stiff back.

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