Wade, Lyon hurt WIWest Indies batsman Darren Bravo giving a catch to Ed Cowan at forward short-leg. (Picture courtesy DigicelCricket.com/Brooks LaTouche Photography.)
By Garth Wattley in Dominica | Wed, April 25, 2012 - 12:05 AM
Matthew Wade swept Australia out of trouble and Nathan Lyon had spun West Indies deep into it by the time the second day of the third and final Digicel Test match concluded yesterday.
West Indies will resume this morning on 165 for eight, still a considerable 163 runs behind Australia’s first innings of 328 all out.
Wade’s outstanding counter-attacking maiden Test century (106, 146 balls, 10 fours, one six) took much of the gloss off Shane Shillingford’s first five-wicket haul (42.5-9-119-6) as he pulled Australia from their already improved overnight 212 for seven to a position of strength.
Lyon then got rid of Adrian Barath, Kieran Powell and Carlton Baugh to enhance the Aussies’ dominance.
The morning’s action suggested the batsmen could enjoy themselves on a pitch seeming to have less bounce for the spinners. But that false notion lasted just 17 balls.
Brathwaite, with two straight zeros behind him, collected a third when he hung his bat at a Ben Hilfenhaus delivery comfortably wide enough to leave and gave a catch to first slip.
The partnership of 63 for the next wicket between Barath (29) and Kieran Powell (40) lasted a shade under two hours.
That was about the only period of peace for the Windies the rest of the afternoon until Shivnarine Chanderpaul (34) and Ravi Rampaul (24) restored some sanity with a positive ninth-wicket stand so far worth 45.
Coping just as badly against the off-spin of Lyon as the Aussies had against Shillingford, West Indies lost wickets steadily once Barath turned a ball to Ed Cowan at forward short-leg.
Before tea Darren Bravo (10) also fell to slow bowling, part-time leg-spinner David Warner getting him to glove a catch to Cowan off the one ball he pitched on the right length.
Tea came at 73 for three. It was not pleasant for the becalmed crowd, which grew more restive after the break when Powell chopped Lyon onto his stumps, Narsingh Deonarine was adjudged lbw to Lyon via TV referral, Baugh fell to another Cowan catch off Lyon and captain Darren Sammy (10) was run out going for an ill-judged run with Chanderpaul.
That mix-up would not have shifted Chanderpaul’s focus, however. Still 58 shy of 10 000 Test runs, he can reach that landmark today and pull the Windies close, if he receives more help from the other end, like Wade did yesterday.
The left-handed wicketkeeper-batsman did enjoy two chances, first when he was two on the first day and then yesterday morning on 22. But his confident sweeping against the previously dominant off-spin of Shillingford and otherwise clean hitting, coupled with aggressive running between the wickets, so put off the West Indies that they never recovered.
Wade got 84 of the 116 runs the last three Australian wickets added yesterday morning when he and Mitchell Starc resumed. It was an action-packed session.
That eighth-wicket stand eventually realised 57 before the casual Starc (35) was run out, by smart fielding by Brathwaite who hustled in a throw to wicketkeeper Baugh who removed the bails.
However, Wade and next man Hilfenhaus shattered West Indian optimism on and off the field with a ninth-wicket, century partnership. Pacers Rampaul and Roach did not hit a good length often enough to get wickets and Wade solved the Shillingford problem, slog/sweeping and striking in the orthodox manner.
However, Shillingford, having waited for most of the morning for that coveted fifth wicket, also reached his milestone when Bravo’s quick thinking, nimble feet and safe hands combined to remove Wade.
Having caught the swing, but mindful of the boundary rope he was about to step on, Bravo threw the ball up and ran back to clutch it.
Shillingford got a bonus when Hilfenhaus was bowled missing a swipe.
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