Bridgetown: West Indies skipper Carl Hooper and Shivnarine Chanderpaul hammered centuries to put India's attack to the sword in the third Test at the Kensington Oval here on Saturday.
Hooper hit 115 and Chanderpaul an unbeaten 101 as the West Indies posted 394 in reply to India's 102 for a healthy lead of 292, despite losing its last six wickets for 18 runs. India, leading the five-Test series 1-0 following its 37-run victory in the second Test at Port-of-Spain, was seven for no loss at lunch on the third day. Shiv Das was batting on three and Wasim Jaffer on four. Left-arm fast bowler Ashish Nehra grabbed 4 for 112 and off spinner Harbhajan Singh 3 for 87, including two off successive balls, but their efforts came too late to stop the West Indies from gaining a big lead.
Hooper struck 18 fours in his 12th Test hundred and left-handed Chanderpaul 13 in his fourth to share a 215-run stand for the fifth wicket. Hooper outscored Chanderpaul in the morning session with an amazing range of attacking strokes, racing from 88 to 109 off just 11 balls with the help of five boundaries. Nehra suffered the most as he started the day with an easily forgettable over in which he went for three fours. Hooper, 70 overnight, cut and steered Nehra for two fours and then lofted him over gully for another boundary to reach his hundred off 210 balls to extend his excellent form against the tourists. The West Indies captain, who scored 233 in the first Test and 50 in the second, was dismissed playing shots in the second hour.
He was caught by Sachin Tendulkar at mid-off while trying to loft Harbhajan on the leg-side, but not before he had put his team in command with his 226-ball knock. Ridley Jacobs fell for nought in the next over as he edged Nehra to wicket-keeper Ajay Ratra. Chanderpaul, 75 overnight, continued to bat confidently as he flicked Nehra for a four and then drove through the covers for a three to reach his hundred.
The stylish left-hander, who scored 140 in the first Test and an unbeaten 67 in the second, celebrated his second century against the tourists hugging team-mate Mervyn Dillon and kissing the pitch. He, however, received no support from the lower-order batsmen as Nehra had Dillon caught by Das at forward short-leg off a lifter and Harbhajan removed Pedro Collins and Adam Sanford off consecutive balls. Cameron Cuffy survived the hat-trick ball with a single before being run out.
| Copyright AFP 2001 |