India Beat West Indies In First Test

Kingston (Jamaica), June 24 (IANS): India put up a disciplined bowling performance to beat West Indies by 63 runs in the first Test and take a 1-0 lead in the three-match series.

West Indies, chasing a target of 326 runs, cracked under pressure and folded up for 262 just after the lunch on the fourth day at Sabina Park here.

Praveen Kumar and Ishant Sharma took three wickets each while Amit Mishra claimed two.

Praveen took the crucial wicket of Shivnaraine Chanderpaul (30) and Darren Bravo (41), who were unseparated overnight.

It was a great comeback for India who were reeling at 85/6 in the first innings before Suresh Raina stroked 82 runs and guided the first innings total to 246.

The bowlers then joined the party and bowled out West Indies for 173. Praveen (3/38) and Ishant (3/29) removed the top order.

Rahul Dravid held India’s second innings together and scored his 32nd century. His patient knock of 112 runs off 274 balls helped India reach to 252 runs in the second innings.

The hosts were 131/3 Wednesday and were relying on overnight batsmen – veteran Chanderpaul and flamboyant strokemaker Bravo – to lead the challenge. They,however, lost six wickets in the session with the addition of 95 runs.

Bravo (41) and Chanderpaul (30) could add only 17 runs for the day when India got the breakthrough. Bravo’s leg stumps were exposed as he moved too far across and Praveen bowled him round his legs.

Chanderpaul was caught by Raina at the cover off Praveen.

Wicket-keeper Carlton Baugh could not open his account and Virat Kohli caught him at leg slip off Harbhajan Singh. West Indies were soon tottering at 150/6.

Captain Darren Sammy (25) and Ravi Rampaul (34) added 31 runs at a quick pace. Sammy hit three successive sixes of Harbhajan but gave his wicket to Mishra.

Brendan Nash was unlucky as Mishra’s short delivery stayed low and trapped him leg before.

Ishant Sharma got the wicket of Rampaul with an unplayable bouncer that brushed his gloves and captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni took a one-handed catch over his head.

Last man Devendra Bishoo (26) and Fidel Edwards (15) added 39 runs before Raina bowled Bishoo.

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