Courtney Walsh was selected for his Test debut, and would go on to have a stellar career for the West Indies, taking over 500 wickets.
Midway through the opening day, it seemed like Kim Hughes' decision to field first was the right one. Two days of rain in Perth before the match had left the pitch unpredictable, and swing bowler Terry Alderman, playing in his first Test since his altercation with a pitch invader at the same ground two years before, took four wickets for five runs in 26 balls to have the West Indies at 104 for five, after Gordon Greenidge and Desmond Haynes had put together an opening partnership of 83. Jeff Dujon and Larry Gomes steadied the innings, leaving the West Indies at 211 for six at stumps on the first day. Dujon had actually taken a blow to the head from Alderman, and had to go off briefly due to complaints of blurred vision.
The pair batted all the way through until an hour after lunch on the second day, putting together 149 runs for the seventh wicket, before Dujon was caught behind off Alderman for a well-made 139 which included 21 fours. Gomes was the last man out, by which time he too had made a century (127) and the West Indies had scored 416.
Australia got off to a dreadful start, limping to 36 for three at the end of day two, and then collapsing to be all out for 76, their lowest ever innings against the West Indies. Michael Holding took six wickets in eight overs, his 13th haul of five or more wickets in an innings in Test cricket. The Australians were forced to follow on, and lost Kepler Wessels in the first over. John Dyson and Graeme Wood provided some resistance with a 90-run partnership. They were helped in some part by giant paceman Joel Garner, who was no-balled six times in one over! But after they were removed, the middle order again provided feeble resistance, and only a final wicket stand of 59 between Alderman and Geoff Lawson delayed the inevitable innings victory until early on the fourth day.
West Indies went through the qualifying round of 10 matches unbeaten against Australia and Sri Lanka. The first final though was won by Australia, the West Indies fought back to win the second. This demoralised the Aussies as they easily lost the third.