West Indies, India Draw Second Test

Bad light foiled what was shaping up to be an enterprising finish as West Indies and India played to a stalemate in the second Test here Saturday.

Chasing 281 for victory, West Indies were 202 for seven when fading light ended the contest with 10.3 overs remaining in the final day’s play at Kensington Oval.

Seemingly safe at 201 for five, the hosts lost Darren Bravo for 73 and captain Darren Sammy without scoring in the space of seven balls with just one run added, to expose the tail to the wrath of a fired up seamer Ishant Sharma.

However, Ravi Rampaul faced just one delivery before umpires Asad Rauf and Ian Gould ruled the light too bad to continue.

It was a let-off for the Windies especially and they now head into the final Test starting Wednesday in Dominica, still in with a chance of levelling the series.

Set a challenging target to win the contest, West Indies plunged to the brink of collapse at 55 for three but Bravo stood tall with a superb knock that spanned 282 minutes, 174 balls and included eight fours.

Playing solidly and patiently, he was helped out by Carlton Baugh who stroked an attacking, unbeaten 46, and opener Adrian Barath who got 27.

The left-handed Bravo also anchored key half-century stands, posting 54 for the fourth wicket with Shiv Chanderpaul (12) and 69 for the sixth wicket with Baugh.

Sharma proved to be the hosts’ main tormentor yet again, claiming four for 53 to end the game with match figures of 10 for 108 and claim Man-of-the-Match honours.

West Indies started the final session on 108 for three but lost Chanderpaul in the first over after the break, lbw to off-spinner Harbhajan Singh in what was a howler of a decision by umpire Ian Gould.

The veteran left-hander missed an attempted cut at a delivery and was struck on the pad but replays showed the ball missing off-stump by a long way.

Marlon Samuels made just nine before he was trapped lbw to Sharma to leave the match on edge but Baugh counter-attacking innings, gave the Windies hope of saving the game.

Dropped by wicketkeeper Mahendra Singh Dhoni off Harbhajan before he had scored, Baugh punished the Indians with five fours and a six off 61 balls.

Following a half-hour rain break which bought the Windies precious time, Bravo nicked an innocuous delivery from fast bowler Abhimanyu Mithun behind and Sammy played across a full length delivery from Sharma to depart lbw in the next over, before bad light had the final say.

West Indies’ run chase had started shakily when Lendl Simmons edged Sharma to Rahul Dravid at slip for 14 with the score on 18 and Ramnaresh Sarwan was caught by Suresh Raina at third slip for eight, attempting a forcing back foot drive off seamer Praveen Kumar.

The dismissal extended Sarwan’s bleak run of form as he has now scored a paltry 83 runs from his last eight innings.

Barath cracked three fours and a six over point off Mithun but when he edged Sharma to Raina at slip after being beaten off the two previous deliveries, Windies were tottering.

Earlier, India declared their first innings at 269 for six after resuming the day at 229 for three, with V.V.S. Laxman moving his overnight 72 to 87.

He fell to pacer Fidel Edwards who claimed all three wickets to tumble, to finish with five for 76.

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