India sniff victory vs WI on Day 3

Published: Thursday, June 23, 2011, 9:48 [IST]
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India sniff victory vs WI on Day 3

Kingston, June 23: In an eventful Day 3 of the first Test between visitors India and the West Indies, the hosts were trailing by 195 runs with 7 wickets in hand, having reached 131/3 in the second innings. Earlier in the day, Windies captain Darren Sammy and leg-break Devendra Bishoo ensnared 4 wickets apiece to bowl out India for 252. Rahul Dravid was the lone figure of fortitude for his side, making 112 off 274 balls and thus helping set the Windies a target of 326 to win.

Resuming on their overnight score of 91/3 in 41 overs, the pressure was on Rahul Dravid (unbeaten on 45) and Virat Kohli (14 not out) to bat India out of trouble. But in just the fourth over of the day, Kohli succumbed to a short ball from Fidel Edwards and was caught behind for 15 off 54 balls. India were 100/4 in 44.3 overs.

Then new batsman Suresh Raina joined Dravid and batted steadily for the next 17 overs. But in the 63rd over, Devendra Bishoo got the breakthrough, getting Raina caught at leg slip in a controversial umpire's decision. Raina was on his wasy for 27 off 53 balls as India's score now read 148/5. At the end of that over, India had reached 150/5.

The new man at the crease, M S Dhoni, tried to offset the pressure by striking Bishoo for a six and Darren Sammy for a four off successive overs. But Bishoo brought the Indian captain's belligerence to an end when he had him top-edge a bouncy delivery to square cover. Dhoni was out for 16 off 16 balls and India went into Lunch at 166/6 in 67 overs.

Soon after the break, Sammy effected a double strike. He first trapped Harbhajan Singh in front for 5 off 31 balls and then in the same over, bowled Praveen Kumar for a duck. India were now in dire straits at 183/8 with the end of their innings looking imminent. But Dravid stood firm and together with a resilient Amit Mishra, took India past 200 in the 81st over.

The batting duo put on a valuable 56-run stand, before Mishra played an impetuous upper-cut to be caught at third man. The leg-break was out of 28 off 60 balls and India were 239/9 with Tea just around the corner. Last batsman Ishant Sharma helped Dravid take the score past 250 before the latter perished to Bishoo for 112. India were all out for 252 in 94.5 overs.

Set with a formidable target of 326 to win, the Windies got off to a forceful start. After openers Lendl Simmons and Adrian Barath struck a couple of fours between them, Barath laid into Ishant Sharma. Her clobbered the seamer for two sixes and a four in the 6th over as the hosts climbed to 35/0 in 6 overs.

The batting duo kept pummeling away at the Indian pacemen and when leggie Amit Mishra was brought onto bowl, they knocked a four and six off him straight away. The Windies had thus climbed to 58/0 in 10 overs. But in the next over, Praveen Kumar did in Barath with an outswinger which the batsman edged straight to Raina at third slip. Barath was on his way for 38 off 36 balls and the Windies were 62/1 in 11 overs.

But there was more trouble in store for the hosts as in the next over, new batsman Ramnaresh Sarwan poked at an outswinger from Ishant to see it go right into the hands of Virat Kohli at gully. The next man out in the middle Darren Bravo who counter-attacked with two fours off Praveen on the 15th over, before Ishant cleaned up Lendl Simmons for 27 off 41 in the 16th over.

At 80/3, it looked like another Calypso collapse was on the cards. But Bravo and Shivnarine Chanderpaul weathered the storm admirably, taking Windies past 100 in the 24th over and ending the day at 131/3 in 33 overs. Chanderpaul was unbeaten on 24 off 52 balls and Bravo was not out on 30 off 67 balls as the hosts still trailed India by 195 runs.

Oneindia Cricket

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