1st Test: India In The Driver’s Seat At The End Of Day 3




After a dismal first innings batting performance on Day 2, India were back on top after a stunning bowling performance on Day 3. Ravichandran Ashwin’s six-wicket haul, the second best for an Indian debutant let India wrest back the advantage after the batsmen gave the West Indians a lead of 95 runs. India did just what the doctor ordered for them, wrapping the West Indies’ innings for a meager 180 runs and then the Indian middle order holding fort at 152-2 on Day 2 of the first Test match.

1st Test: India in the driver’s seat at the end of Day 3

1st Test: India in the driver’s seat at the end of Day 3

On a slow and low track which saw the Indian batting crumble largely due to their poor judgement and lack of application than due to the demons in the pitch, nothing better was expected of the tourists. Losing 2 wickets at the end of the second day itself worked against them as the middle order was exposed to the Indian spinners on a crumbling wicket. The spinners took maximum advantage of the pitch and produced what was expected of them quite convincingly.

West Indies found a way to lose 4 wickets in the first hour though India had a few missed chances earlier on. Kirk Edwards started positively but left a straight delivery from Umesh Yadav only to give the other debutant his first Test wicket. A familiar adversary then came on for India as Shivnarine Chanderpaul looked to take the game from India again scoring consecutive boundaries of the first 2 balls he faced. Ashwin then got him with a lbw which was slightly contentious and India was only too happy to see his back.

The rest of the batting order fell like nine pins as the last pair managed to put on 23 runs before the Indians closed out the West Indian innings for 180 runs. They gave themselves a decent target of 276 runs to chase in more than 2 days which shouldn’t have been a problem considering the quality of the Indian batting but looking at the last 6 Test matches, it seems more challenging than easy for the formidable batting line-up. Gautam Gambhir and Virender Sehwag came out to bat with an aggressive approach and they went all guns blazing till the spinners came in to slow down things.

Gambhir then fell leg-before to Darren Sammy with a delivery that seemed to go down the leg side. Rahul Dravid, India’s Wall then came in to join Sehwag and ably gave the latter company as he went on to score a fifty-his second in the match. Sehwag eventually fell chopping one onto his stumps which brought Sachin Tendulkar to the crease. And the Master Blaster scored 15,000 runs becoming the first in the history to do so.

Dravid and Tendulkar were on the crease as India finished the day at 152 for 2. With 124 runs needed to win their first in the last seven tests, the home team is expected to win with a day to spare. But the West Indies still cannot be written off as they can be dangerous if they put up a spirited performance on Day 4.

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