Though West Indies have entrusted its test side to the youngsters, there hasn’t been the traditional calypso effect after all as we’ve witnessed it in first test where the batsmen got castled in Ashwin’s spin trap in the second innings and the bowlers were taken on a ride by the Test skipper kohli and his troops
India started day 1 on high note where they contained the Caribbean side to a paltry 196 where the major credit went to Ashwin as he went onto register another 5-wicket haul. Ashwin himself was surprised when the opposition had chosen to bat as they were coming into this game with a woeful form. The Indian bowlers continued to trouble the West Indian batsmen as their top order was back to the dressing room within the first 6 overs of the day’s play. Ishant who is now the spearhead for the team striked early on and picked 2 wickets in consecutive deliveries sending Brathwaite & Bravo back. Shami ensured that the momentum was with India as he took the wicket of Chandrika. Blackwood and Samuels then put on an 81 run stand to the 4th wicket which incidentally was the highest for the innings as the Spin Maestro ‘ Ashwin ‘ had devastated the west indian batting line up yet again. He dismissed Blackwood with an LBW just before the lunch break and showed us how he also showed us that he wouldn’t get carried away with the batsmen’s flamboyant shots as he picked Samuel’s wicket after being hit for a maximum over mid-on. Dowrich got out in a bizarre fashion as his bat got stuck onto the flap of his pads resulting in a nick which was taken up by saha from behind. Chase who was batting with patience soon lost his concentration as he played a good length delivery outside off and giving out a healthy edge to Dhawan where he completed a low catch with perfection. The Tail was trying to add some valuable runs, but the spin Duo of Ashiwn& Mishra wrapped it up. Ashwin bowled a looping delivey to Bishoo where he miscued his sweep shot and gave a simple catch to Dhawan. Ashwin realized that he could get another Five-for and capitalized on the spin and bounce and successfully got the West Indian captain’s wicket in a similar fashion to that off Samuel’s wicket and he went onto get his 18th Five-for in 18th Five-for in 34 Tests. There were couple of instances where India could get the last pair out but the umpire wasn’t completely convinced in Mishra’s LBW appeal, There was a run-out chance created but the Indians couldn’t bank on it either. Gabriel & Cummins took advantages of those opportunities and added a valuable 38 runs to the last wicket, Mishra was disheartened as simple catch was put down in the slips but soon was reimbursed as Gabriel gave a regulation catch to Kohli at short covers. The West Indian side had scored a total of 196 runs in 52
The Indian opening pair had a change of personnel as Vijay was out with a Thumb injury.
Rahul covered for him as he went onto score another scintillating ton. Dhawan who had scored 84 runs in the 1st test couldn’t go on to get a big score as he was sent back by Chase as he played a loose drive to Bravo at short covers. India was on 126 for the loss of 1 wicket on Day 1 where Rahul and Pujara were not out overnight. They both added 121 runs to the second wicket. Pujara’s patient knock came to an end as he was run-out by Chase in the 72ndover. Kohli was the next batsmen in, he was struggling initially with cramps but then he carried on anyway. Rahul went onto showcase his strokes and converted his 100 into a 150. But soon he adjudged out as he edged a delivery going down the leg side, He was pretty disappointed with the decision as he looked confident that he didn’t nick it. Kohli followed him back shortly as succumbed to a soft dismissal as Chandrika had taken a wonderful catch at shot leg. Ashwin didn’t have the same impact to that off in the first test as he got out to Bishoo where he was rightly adjudged out as the ball had an impact with his toe. The responsibilities now lay upon Rahane & Saha as The Indian side is just having a lead of 162 runs with 5 wickets in hand. Can the West indian bowlers Wrap things up? Or can Rahane lead India to a healthy lead?
The game looks well poised and even from here. Day 3’s play would be considered very crucial for both the Sides as it could likely predict the victorious team
– By Akshath Jeksani