Smith, Clarke revive Australia after early Taylor strikes
KINGSTON, Jamaica (AP) — West Indies pacer Jerome Taylor took two wickets without conceding a run before Australia hit back through Steve Smith and captain Michael Clarke to reach 91-2 at lunch on the opening day of the second cricket test on Thursday.
Smith struck six fours in an unbeaten 38 off 76 deliveries. Fellow right-hander Clarke’s innings of 35 not out was spiced with three fours and two sixes.
Taylor, who started with five successive maidens from the Michael Holding End, went to the interval with figures of 6-6-0-2.
The Jamaican gave the West Indies a fantastic start after captain Denesh Ramdin won the toss and chose to bowl.
David Warner fell for a duck to the third ball of the test, sparring a lifter low to Shai Hope at third slip.
Then, in Taylor’s third over, he trapped Shaun Marsh for 11, the left-hander playing across the line of an in-swinger as Australia slipped to 16-2.
The West Indies also thought they removed Clarke when he was on 3, but Kemar Roach’s return catch off the skipper’s leading edge was negated when TV replays revealed the bowler overstepped the front crease.
Clarke emerged from that reprieve to play some majestic strokes, including a lofted straight hit for six off the same bowler.
He and vice-captain Smith stretched their third-wicket partnership to 75 by the break in 96 minutes.
In the lunch interval, former West Indies fast bowler West Hall became the 18th West Indian to be inducted into Hall of Fame in a short ceremony.
Earlier, the hosts were forced to make three changes to the side that lost the opening test in Dominica by nine wickets inside three days.
Legspinner Devendra Bishoo, who was so effective in claiming 6-80 in the first innings of that match, missed out due to a finger injury, and left-arm spinner Veerasammy Permaul took his spot.
Veteran batsman Marlon Samuels and pacer Shannon Gabriel were also ruled out due to flu-like symptoms.
Rajendra Chandrika was included for his debut Test, and is set to open the batting with Kraigg Brathwaite, while Roach replaced Gabriel.
Australia, predictably, chose the same X1 with opener Chris Rogers again ruled out due to concussion.