|West Indies defeated in first test match|
|Thursday, 10 November 2011 10:44|
Despite a fair display on the first two days of their opening test match against host India, at the Feroz Shah Kotla Stadium in Dehli, the West Indies once again failed to maintain the mental strength required to succeed over a five day test match against a top-class opponent.
The seventh ranked West Indies test playing team, captained by Darren Sammy, won the toss and elected to bat on a typically slow and flat Indian wicket against the third ranked India, led by Mahendra Singh Dhoni. West Indies' fairly inexperience batting line-up battled hard against their more experienced opponent, posting a respectable 304 runs all-out in 108 overs. Led by senior batsman Shivnarine Chanderpaul with 118 runs, and 18 year old opening batsman Kraigg Brathwaite, who earlier this year led the West Indies under-19 against their USA counterparts in South Florida at the Broward County Regional Park, with 63 runs. While bowling for India, off brake spin bowler Pragyan Ojha took six wickets for 72 runs and left arm spinner Ravichandran Ashwin took three wickets for 81 runs.
The Indians got off to a positive start with openers Guatam Gambhir and Virender Sehwag, posting 89 runs before Gamhir was run out by captain Sammy for 41. The Indians then struggled against a disciplined West Indies bowling attack that put the ball in the right areas and were bowled out for 209 runs. Sehwag earned top scores with 55 runs and Raul Dravid 54. Captain Sammy led from the front with three wickets for 35 runs, backed by Ravi Rampaul, with two wickets for 44 runs, and Devendra Bishoo, with two wickets for 55 runs.
With a lead of 95 runs on first innings and with just about an hour's play before the end of day two, the West Indies were immediately put under pressure by India's captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni, who employed both spinners Ashwin and Ojha to open the bowling. This decision may have sent shock waves throughout the West Indies inexperienced batting line they were two wickets down for 21 before the close. They then lost their confidence and surrendered meekly on the third day, bowling out for a 180 runs, with Chanderpaul again leading the way with 47 runs and captain Sammy with 44 runs against Ashwin six wickets for 47 runs.
India who set 276 runs for victory, cruised home on the fourth day, reaching the target for the loss of five wickets and a day to spare. Sachin Tendulkar, with 76 runs, VVS Laxman, not out with 58 runs, Vinder Sehwag, with 55 runs and Raul Dravid, with 33 runs, led the way against a West Indies team that lost self-confidence.
Now trailing 1-0 in the three test series, the West Indies must try to somehow rebound from this defeat or face the prospect of been white-washed.