SHANE Watson powered to within a whisker of his first Test century, leading an emphatic Australian response to a rare display of West Indies dominance.
Australia was 0-174 at stumps on day two at Adelaide Oval, with Watson unbeaten on 96 and his opening partner Simon Katich on 71.
The pair made an aggressive reply to the Windies' imposing first innings of 451, a total largely built on Saturday by Australian-born Brendan Nash.
The son of Jamaican parents, Nash - who was born in Western Australia and played for Queensland before moving to Jamaica in 2007 - compiled a methodical 92 as the visitors enjoyed a rare half-day of dominance.
The Windies tailend batsmen ran Australia ragged in compiling 117 runs for their last four wickets, before before Watson thundered Australia back into the contest.
Watson eclipsed his previous Test best score of 78 and was savage on a wayward West Indies bowling attack which failed to capitalise on the fine work of their batsmen.
The Queensland product struck 16 boundaries in a dominant display which deserves a breakthrough ton in his 20th Test innings when he resumes on Sunday.
Watson and Katich's partnership was stunning, but the hosts still trail the West Indies by 277 runs.
Earlier, Nash fell for 92, agonisingly short of his second Test ton, when he chopped a Mitchell Johnson delivery onto his stumps, leaving the Windies all out for 451.
The left-hander had built a 68-run final-wicket stand with big-hitting Ravi Rampaul, who twice clattered the terraces in front of the scoreboard with monster sixes.
Nash's innings combined with Dwayne Bravo's ton yesterday has saved the Windies - lashed as lazy after the Gabba debacle - the humiliation of another embarrassing loss inside three days.
The morning started in the best possible way for Australia when Peter Siddle (1/92) banked his first wicket, trapping Darren Sammy lbw with the opening ball of the day.
Sulieman Benn (17) also fell lbw, to Hauritz, and Kemar Roach made just two before he looked unlucky to be given caught behind off Mitchell Johnson (2/94).
But Roach was unable to appeal the decision, after both Benn and Sammy extended the West Indies' poor run with the video referee, having their protests knocked back by the third umpire.