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May 29, 2004
USA 136 and 87 for 2 require another 143 runs to beat Canada 221 and 145
A day of fluctuating fortunes has set up a fascinating final day in the Intercontinental Cup match at Florida. After Canada were bowled out for 145 in their second innings, USA closed on 87 for 2, needing 143 more runs to win on a wearing pitch.
John Davison quickly wrapped up the American innings, taking two further wickets to finish with a career best of 8 for 61. America were dimissed for 136, giving Canada a lead of 85, but they got off to a poor start, faltering to 14 for 2.
At lunch, they had fallen further to 50 for 5, and the wickets continued to tumble after the interval. Davison dropped down the order, but failed to halt the slide. Canada soon slipped to 97 for 8, but Sunil Dhaniram made an invaluable unbeaten 65, putting on nearly 50 runs with Ashish Patel and Easan Sinnathamby, to take the total to 145 and setting the USA 230 to win. In contrast to the first innings, it was the pace bowlers who did the damage, with Howard Johnson and Tony Reid each taking two wickets .
In reply, the USA lost Leon Romero, the former Trinidad and Tobago player, early on, and then Richard Staple. Mark Johnson and Steve Messiah then steadied the ship before the close.
After the tragedy of Phillip Hughes' death, this match showed that cricket and life will continue to go on. This time Test cricket dug in and got through to tea.
Virat Kohli's innings on the final day transcended the conditions, the bowlers and his batting partners, and when it was all in vain, he displayed remarkable grace in defeat
The new stand-in captain has the makings of a long-term leader, given his ability to stay ahead of the game
The failed gamble of handing Karn Sharma a Test debut despite him having a moderate first-class record means India have to rethink who their spinner will be
Turning your back on a system that the whole cricketing world wants a discussion on, refusing to discuss it because it is not 100%, is not good enough
After a long time we have seen an Indian team and captain enjoy the challenge of trying to overcome stronger opposition in an overseas Test