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June 2, 2007
Runako Morton gave West Indies' batting a timely boost with a maiden double century on the second day against MCC. He formed the backbone of a strong reply to MCC's 260 while Daren Ganga and Sylvester Joseph supplied useful forties.
With Ramnaresh Sarwan out of the tour even more pressure has been heaped on the inexperienced players in West Indies' tour squad. Despite also making a century in the only other tour match, against Somerset, Morton failed to impress in the opening two Tests. He struggled against Monty Panesar at Lord's before twice falling to poorly executed shots, in seamer-friendly conditions, at Headingley.
However, he found an attack made up mostly of students much more to his liking and tucked in from the start following the early loss of Devon Smith to Barbados-born Ruel Brathwaite. Morton quickly overtook Ganga, who settled into the anchor role, and scored a large proportion of his runs in boundaries.
His first hundred came off 109 balls before he slowed slightly, taking another 136 deliveries to reach his double, before he was trapped lbw one ball later by Simon Butler. With Ganga he added 161 then Joseph contributed 41 to a third-wicket stand of 138.
"I really worked hard today, I owed it to the team," Morton said. "It was long overdue to get a double. It is a very nice venue as well so the atmosphere was right for that kind of an innings. I enjoyed batting out there. At times I tend to hit the ball too hard but as the innings developed I let my timing take over."
MCC had extended their innings into the 10th over of the morning with Shaaiq Choudhry completing a gritty half-century. Fidel Edwards claimed two more wickets; Mali Richards brilliantly held at deep midwicket by Dwayne Bravo and Robbie Williams caught at point off a leading edge.
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
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