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Windies hand South Africa 149-run lead in second Test


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Windies hand South Africa 149-run lead in second Test
Jermaine Blackwood: made the top score of 49. (File)

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Gros Islet – West Indies failed to build on the work of their bowlers and South Africa bowled them out to take a first innings lead of 149 in the second Test in St. Lucia.

Jermaine Blackwood hit the top score of 49, passing the career mark of 2,000 runs, and Shai Hope made 43, but no other Windies batsman reached 20, and they were dismissed for 149 a shade before the close on the rain-affected second day of the Test at the Daren Sammy Cricket Ground.

The Caribbean side – led by the Barbados Pride pair of Kyle Mayers and Kemar Roach – did a good job and bowled out the South Africans in an extended morning session before lunch for 298.

But they crumbled to 56 for four at tea under skilful bowling from the Proteas and they never recovered.

Wiaan Mulder was the most successful South Africa bowler with three for one from four overs; Kagiso Rabada, Lungi Ngidi and left-arm spinner Keshav Maharaj grabbed two wickets each.

West Indies captain Kraigg Brathwaite fell to the very first ball of the innings, when he was caught behind, down the leg-side off Rabada, after the South Africans belatedly reviewed umpire Gregory Brathwaite’s not out verdict.

Three overs later, Kieran Powell was adjudged lbw to Ngidi for five, when he was trapped on the crease by a well-pitched delivery. The left-hander unsuccessfully reviewed umpire Joel Wilson’s decision and ball tracking technology suggested the delivery would have clipped the top of the stumps.

West Indies were eight for two and Roston Chase joined Shai Hope and stemmed the fall of wickets before he was caught at short square leg off Nortje for four, turning a delivery straight into the lap of fielder Kyle Verreynne.

Mayers tried to counter-attack, but Maharaj had him caught at slip for 12, essaying a loose drive in the final half-hour before the break.

After tea, Hope showed signs of why he is beloved by most observers with a few attractive strokes and put on 43 with Blackwood for the fifth wicket to halt the slide before he was bowled, playing on a delivery from Ngidi that cut back from outside the off-stump.

Jason Holder failed to live up to his billing of being the No.1 all-rounder in the World, when he sliced a drive and was caught at gully off Rabada for 10.

Joshua da Silva resisted for more than hour with Blackwood before he was caught behind off Mulder to start the regular procession between the pitch and the Windies changing rooms – and the home team lost their last four wickets for six runs in the space of 22 balls.

Earlier, the Caribbean side appeared set for another day of toil, after South Africa resumed from their overnight total of 218 for five and a wet outfield caused the start to be delayed by half-hour.

But Mayers ended with the impressive figures of three for 28 from 15 overs – including the prized scalp of Quinton de Kock for 96 – and Roach supported with three for 45 from 21.4 overs in a dramatic turnaround for West Indies.

Roach claimed the scalp of Mulder – the only wicket to fall in the first hour – caught behind for eight, but it was Holder that unlocked the floodgates in a second spell after a period of resistance from de Kock and Maharaj.

Holder had Maharaj caught behind for one about 15 minutes before the rescheduled lunch interval and South Africa lost their last four wickets for 23 in the space of 50 balls.

West Indies trail 0-1 in the two-Test series, after they crashed to an innings and 63 runs defeat inside three days in the first Test, which ended last Saturday at the same venue.

Though the Vivian Richards Trophy, symbol of Test supremacy between the two sides, is destined to return to Johannesburg, West Indies will be aiming to square the series and avoid their first series defeat of the year.

Summarised scores:

South Africa 298 (Quinton de Kock 96, Dean Elgar 77, Kyle Verreynne 27, Kagiso Rabada 21 not out, Keshav Maharaj 12; Kyle Mayers 3-28, Kemar Roach 3-45, Shannon Gabriel 2-65).

West Indies 149 (Jermaine Blackwood 49, Shai Hope 43, Kyle Mayers 12, Jason Holder 10; Wiaan Mulder 3-1, Kagiso Rabada 2-24, Lungi Ngidi 2-27, Keshav Maharaj 2-47).

(AR)