India has taken control with a sharp bowling attack of Pacer Ishant Sharma and a reckless batting of West Indies on the day two of the first Test against West Indies on Friday at Antigua.
The West Indies are currently reeling at 189 for eight at stumps after carelessly threw wickets one after another. India are now leading by 108 runs. Ishant Sharma took a five-wicket haul, his ninth in Tests, to put India in a strong position going into day three at Sir Vivian Richards Stadium.
After a promising start, West Indies innings came to an abrupt downfall in which Roston Chase (48 off 47), John Campbell (23 off 30), Darren Bravo (18 off 27), Shai Hope (24 off 65) and Shimron Hetmyer (35 off 47)- all could not win to build a lasting partnership. India, who resumed the day at 203 for six, went on to make 297 courtesy a fighting 58 from Ravindra Jadeja who was ably supported by Ishant (19 off 62) during their 60-run stand for the eighth wicket.
Though the conditions were good for batting but Ishant made life difficult for Windies with bat and ball. After frustrating the hosts in the morning session with his dogged stay in the middle, Ishant troubled the opposition with his incisive spells which included highly effective cross-seam deliveries. He was brilliant too with catching off his own bowling as he got two wickets in that fashion. At tea, the West Indies were struggling at 82 for three. After scoring a crucial half-century, Jadeja removed debutant Shamarh Brooks (11) to leave the home team at 50 for three.
The left-arm spinner had Brooks caught at first slip after his attempted cut ricocheted off Rishabh Pant's thigh to fall into the safe hands of Ajinkya Rahane. Openers Kraigg Brathwaite (14) and Campbell, dismissed by Ishant and Mohammad Shami respectively.
As tail enders, in the morning, Jadeja and Ishant frustrated West Indies with a timely 60 run-stand for the eighth wicket, helping India reach 297 all out at the stroke of lunch. Jadeja and Ishant batted sensibly in their 116-ball stand, defying the West Indian pacers.
Jadeja and Ishant were able to negotiate the threat posed by the potent pace duo of Shannon Gabriel (3/71) and Kemar Roach (4/66) after losing Rishabh Pant (24) in the second over of the day. Jadeja's innings comprised six fours and a maximum before he became the last man to be dismissed in the Indian innings, leading to lunch.
Running out of partners, Jadeja showed urgency to collect some vital runs and brought up his 11th half-century with a slap to cover for four.
India (1st innings): 297 all-out in 96.4 overs (Rahane 81, Jadeja 58; Roach 4/66, Gabriel 3/71)
West Indies (1st innings): 189/8 in 59 overs (Chase 48; Ishant 5/42, Bumrah 1/36)