Chanderpaul nightmare continues to haunt, WI 446/5

Published: Friday, November 1, 2002, 23:10 [IST]
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Kolkata: The spectre of Shivnarine Chanderpaul returned to haunt India on Friday as the prolific batsman cracked a solid 136 not out to help the West Indies gain an upper hand in the third and final Test. The 28-year-old Guyanese left-hander scored his sixth Test century in 61 matches as the tourists posted 446 for 5 at stumps on the third day in reply to India's 358. The West Indies was 88 runs ahead with five wickets in hand. The tourists were struggling at 255 for 5 before Chanderpaul came to his team's rescue with a 191-run stand for the unfinished sixth wicket with Marlon Samuels, who scored a career-best 89 not out. Chanderpaul continued to relish the Indian attack as he compiled his fifth hundred in 14 Tests against the hosts. He troubled Saurav Ganguly's Indians the most in a five-Test home series this year as he aggregated 562 with three centuries at an average of 140.50. India was able to dismiss him just four times in seven Test innings. Chanderpaul returned to his big-scoring ways after making just one half-century in the previous four Test innings, dominating the Indian attack with a wide range of shots. He warded off the Indian spin threat on a slow turning wicket with his immense determination and faultless shot-selection, hitting one six and 16 fours in his 255- ball knock.Leg spinner Anil Kumble conceded 150 runs and off spinner Harbhajan Singh 101 as India went wicketless in the last two sessions. India was at the receiving end for the first time in a three-Test series as Chanderpaul and Samuels batted sensibly to gather runs comfortably against both spinners and seamers. While Chanderpaul did the expected, the 21-year-old Samuels exceeded expectations in his first Test on the current tour, as he gave no chance during his 167-ball knock, which contained 15 fours. Samuels's previous best was an unbeaten 60 against Australia at Melbourne two years ago. Chanderpaul reached his century in the post-lunch session when he steered paceman Javagal Srinath for a brace. He then took off his helmet, hugged Samuels and kissed the Eden Gardens pitch. He was the first to counter-attack to ease the pressure on his team after Chris Gayle (88) and skipper Carl Hooper (19) fell in the morning session. Left-arm seamer Ashish Nehra and Kumble shared the early wickets to raise India's hopes of seizing the initiative after the tourists resumed at 189 for 3. Gayle was the first to go, caught off his gloves by Virender Sehwag at short-leg in Kumble's second over. He added eight to his overnight score of 80, hitting one six and 15 fours in his 229-ball knock. Chanderpaul and Hooper appeared to have steadied the innings before Nehra struck in his first over with the second new ball, taken after 100 overs. Nehra found the edge of Hooper's bat with the one that moved away from the right- hander and young wicket-keeper Parthiv Patel dived to his right to bring off a low catch. Chanderpaul batted slowly and cautiously in the morning session before stepping up the run-rate in the afternoon with a flurry of shots, swinging Kumble over square- leg for a six. He had completed his half-century off 119 balls, but took 60 more deliveries to reach his hundred. Samuels got a boost in confidence from Chanderpaul's company as he denied India a breakthrough with his resolute batting.

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