India v West Indies, 1st Test, New Delhi, 3rd day November 8, 2011

West Indies struggle to retain stranglehold

S Aga
The once-dominant West Indies has spent more than a decade unable to close out games, especially away from home
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In 2006, after India had won the first one-day match of their Caribbean tour, Greg Chappell, then the India coach, raised hackles across the Caribbean by suggesting that the men in maroon had forgotten how to win. In the outrage that followed, the kernel of truth in the statement was forgotten.

The team that once put together the blueprint on how to dominate cricket matches has spent more than a decade unable to close out games, especially away from home.

The numbers don't lie. Since Courtney Walsh and Curtly Ambrose - the last special products of a fast-bowling assembly line that lasted a quarter century - retired a decade ago, West Indies have won precisely one Test away from home against established opposition. That came in the Boxing Day Test of 2007, when a century from Shivnarine Chanderpaul and disciplined pace bowling from Daren Powell, Jerome Taylor, Dwayne Bravo and Fidel Edwards upset South Africa in Port Elizabeth.

There have been several near misses, especially in Sri Lanka and Australia in recent times. It hasn't been restricted to Test cricket either. Even during the World Cup earlier this year, they lost games against England and India that they could so easily have won. One poor decision led to another, and before you knew it, the game had slipped away.

When they came out to field a second time today, West Indies had every right to be confident, with the last three wickets having added 96 runs. Only twice had teams chased 276 or better in India, and the erratic bounce that ended Darren Sammy's sprightly innings would have interested pace bowler and spinner alike.

But the best laid bowling plans count for little when Virender Sehwag is at the crease. On a pitch that R Ashwin reckoned had nothing for batsmen or bowlers, he batted as though someplace else, cruising to a run-a-ball half-century before chopping the ball onto his stumps.

Had Ravi Rampaul held on to a difficult return catch when he had made just 12, the afternoon's play may well have panned out differently. Instead, the 100 came up quickly and Rahul Dravid and Sachin Tendulkar could ease their way into proceedings, removing much of the anxiety from the dressing room and stands alike.

"We didn't bowl as well as we had in the first innings," said Ottis Gibson, the coach. "The odd ball was keeping low, but we didn't hit the right areas as often as we'd like."

He remained confident, however, that a turnaround was possible. "We thought 276 was a good score to set," he said. "And things have happened in the morning session right through this match."

In Gibson's eyes, though, the West Indies could have easily have set India something in the region of 350. "I thought we could have been a little more positive, without being reckless," he said. "See the way Sehwag plays. He does it on every surface. But he's been playing 10 years. Our younger batsmen will also learn to read situations better."

The intent that Gibson spoke of was certainly in evidence when Chanderpaul and Sammy were batting, but those two aside, the first half of the day was all about Ashwin and his variations. "We know he's a quality spinner," said Gibson. "We've seen that from his performances in one-day cricket. He's brought that confidence into Tests. Some balls kept low, but he bowled wicket to wicket."

West Indies didn't early on, with Sehwag and Gambhir again getting India off to the ideal start. "It didn't look like the pitch was doing anything when Sehwag was batting," said Gibson with a rueful smile. "But nothing's gone to slip or gully the whole match and we felt we had to have a ring field to keep the runs down."

That tactic worked once Sehwag departed, but it's wickets rather than containment that West Indies need on the fourth morning. The morning papers will doubtless have endless references to the possibility of that 100th century, and perhaps Gibson can put some clippings on the dressing-room wall to rile his players. After all, Chappell's alleged barb did inspire four straight West Indian wins.

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Naresh28 on November 9, 2011, 6:31 GMT

    On the 4th day India are already well set to win this encounter. They had done enuff on the 3rd day to gain the upperhand. This test is being won by India's spin strength. English fans although the series is not yet won, India only played badly in one series against you - we were been rubbished by your comments. Yes India has the ability to take 20 wickets and win a test match. In Umesh Yadav we have seen new talent emerge. He proved that even on a bad pitch one can bowl at 140+ in an over. We are were not NO1 in tests just at home.

  • Dravid_Pujara_Gravitas on November 9, 2011, 3:05 GMT

    For those who think this match is over, they are again counting the chickens before the eggs are hatched. The pitch is acting up and it's 4th day. It will only get more unpredictable. That's the beauty of our Indian tracks. They need special skills to bat on them unlike the one dimensional tracks of England, SA and Australia. Can't emphasise how lethal Fidel and Bishoo are going to be on day 4. Can't empahsise how effective the cunning Rampaul is going to be. Sammy is as disciplined as anybody we have seen recently. Windies lead is sufficient. They need just a little bit of luck. Our batsmen will be put under some serious pressure by Fidel, Bishoo and Rampaul and a hell lot of questions will be asked by them on 4th morning. Glad to see Windies taking it to the wire against us. Bring it on. Game on. Day 4...Hail Test Match Cricket...Go Windies go...Go India go....Good luck to both the teams.

  • VivGilchrist on November 9, 2011, 2:41 GMT

    Marlon Samuels - 35 Tests, batting average of 28 - enough said.

  • praveen4honestremark on November 9, 2011, 2:28 GMT

    It will be a great match to watch for cricket lovers.

  • praveen4honestremark on November 9, 2011, 2:26 GMT

    The game is evenly poised, i say it because if west indies can exploit the conditions on 4th day, by bringing in edwards with pace and bishoo on other end then the Indian batting will be under serious. Bishoo because its 4 th day and track will assist soon. And for India all they have to do is keep it simple and play the way they did on third day. No need to panic. Just rotate strikes and don't be too defensive.

  • Randy_Wilson on November 9, 2011, 1:46 GMT

    for those who think that Gayle and company would of made a different beating Indiain India,PLEASE DO LOOK AT WEST INDIES past performance IN TEST. and you will see it's NO different than what WestIndies are doing now. AT leasttheyarenot gettting humilated like Gayle andhis Team, this team have Not lostby an innings or wasnt humilated.Gayle and co got beatby a Weak Aussie Team. They haven't Beaten any Teamin a LONG while beside Bangladesh and that series againt England, where just West Indies luck,but thenthey got beten 3- 0 iagainst the same Opponet. We dont Need Gayle and Co in Test Match,Yall need to watch west indiesCricket.this young team is showing a good future,thyejust need more Matches under there belt and they can Prove the world different, this young Teambow out India in the first inning for one the lowest Total in india, unfortunely they wasnt consistant, Same result would with Gayle andCo, yall NEED to do some research on west indies cricket, We hardly win even with gayle

  • Balb on November 9, 2011, 1:20 GMT

    Almost everyone of the West Indies fans thought Adrian Barath was fit, ready and was selcted for this first test. Would it have made a difference - not sure. Is he still sick? He would have probably be a better partner for Braithwaitte opening the innings. He can stay at the crease for long periods and he can be a run getter. He can play both pace and spin equally. Hope he will be fit and be selected for the remaining tests. If the match is heading India's way on the fourt day with no chance of changing its course, players like Chanderpaul should throw down a few overs. In India you must have an off spinner in the team and chanderpaul left arm can do the trick. What do they have to lose now?

  • simonviller on November 9, 2011, 0:32 GMT

    I heard the criticisms of a few players ,Kirk Edwards and Sammy as usual ,but what about some of the other batsmen during the first innings ?? Bravo for example ,after the stage had been set to build a big innings for the team ,he decides to play a stroke that , Not even a novice is expected to play . The other player is Baugh ,who sweeps from centre wicket ,at a time when he was well set ; we all know the results of these actions . The oportunity lost to build a sizeable first innings score was never re-gained in the second innings ,as a result West Indies incurred the disadvantage . Who knows what could have been the results had these guys made better decisions .

  • on November 9, 2011, 0:17 GMT

    Chanderpaul has been playing brilliantly. Good work. And I hope the WICB and friends don't force you out.

  • USIndianFan on November 8, 2011, 22:25 GMT

    Obviously India are in the drivers seat. Equally obviously VVS looks to be at the end of his career. Bringing Virat in should be a good option for the remaining tests.

    BTW, I don't think the test is over yet. The wicket does seem to be playing unpredictably and a couple of early wickets to change the situation.

    Finally Sammy should be given some credit. He has brought some discipline into the team and this team looks like one that they can build on. They need to stay with this nucleus and focus on giving time for the team to mature.

  • Naresh28 on November 9, 2011, 6:31 GMT

    On the 4th day India are already well set to win this encounter. They had done enuff on the 3rd day to gain the upperhand. This test is being won by India's spin strength. English fans although the series is not yet won, India only played badly in one series against you - we were been rubbished by your comments. Yes India has the ability to take 20 wickets and win a test match. In Umesh Yadav we have seen new talent emerge. He proved that even on a bad pitch one can bowl at 140+ in an over. We are were not NO1 in tests just at home.

  • Dravid_Pujara_Gravitas on November 9, 2011, 3:05 GMT

    For those who think this match is over, they are again counting the chickens before the eggs are hatched. The pitch is acting up and it's 4th day. It will only get more unpredictable. That's the beauty of our Indian tracks. They need special skills to bat on them unlike the one dimensional tracks of England, SA and Australia. Can't emphasise how lethal Fidel and Bishoo are going to be on day 4. Can't empahsise how effective the cunning Rampaul is going to be. Sammy is as disciplined as anybody we have seen recently. Windies lead is sufficient. They need just a little bit of luck. Our batsmen will be put under some serious pressure by Fidel, Bishoo and Rampaul and a hell lot of questions will be asked by them on 4th morning. Glad to see Windies taking it to the wire against us. Bring it on. Game on. Day 4...Hail Test Match Cricket...Go Windies go...Go India go....Good luck to both the teams.

  • VivGilchrist on November 9, 2011, 2:41 GMT

    Marlon Samuels - 35 Tests, batting average of 28 - enough said.

  • praveen4honestremark on November 9, 2011, 2:28 GMT

    It will be a great match to watch for cricket lovers.

  • praveen4honestremark on November 9, 2011, 2:26 GMT

    The game is evenly poised, i say it because if west indies can exploit the conditions on 4th day, by bringing in edwards with pace and bishoo on other end then the Indian batting will be under serious. Bishoo because its 4 th day and track will assist soon. And for India all they have to do is keep it simple and play the way they did on third day. No need to panic. Just rotate strikes and don't be too defensive.

  • Randy_Wilson on November 9, 2011, 1:46 GMT

    for those who think that Gayle and company would of made a different beating Indiain India,PLEASE DO LOOK AT WEST INDIES past performance IN TEST. and you will see it's NO different than what WestIndies are doing now. AT leasttheyarenot gettting humilated like Gayle andhis Team, this team have Not lostby an innings or wasnt humilated.Gayle and co got beatby a Weak Aussie Team. They haven't Beaten any Teamin a LONG while beside Bangladesh and that series againt England, where just West Indies luck,but thenthey got beten 3- 0 iagainst the same Opponet. We dont Need Gayle and Co in Test Match,Yall need to watch west indiesCricket.this young team is showing a good future,thyejust need more Matches under there belt and they can Prove the world different, this young Teambow out India in the first inning for one the lowest Total in india, unfortunely they wasnt consistant, Same result would with Gayle andCo, yall NEED to do some research on west indies cricket, We hardly win even with gayle

  • Balb on November 9, 2011, 1:20 GMT

    Almost everyone of the West Indies fans thought Adrian Barath was fit, ready and was selcted for this first test. Would it have made a difference - not sure. Is he still sick? He would have probably be a better partner for Braithwaitte opening the innings. He can stay at the crease for long periods and he can be a run getter. He can play both pace and spin equally. Hope he will be fit and be selected for the remaining tests. If the match is heading India's way on the fourt day with no chance of changing its course, players like Chanderpaul should throw down a few overs. In India you must have an off spinner in the team and chanderpaul left arm can do the trick. What do they have to lose now?

  • simonviller on November 9, 2011, 0:32 GMT

    I heard the criticisms of a few players ,Kirk Edwards and Sammy as usual ,but what about some of the other batsmen during the first innings ?? Bravo for example ,after the stage had been set to build a big innings for the team ,he decides to play a stroke that , Not even a novice is expected to play . The other player is Baugh ,who sweeps from centre wicket ,at a time when he was well set ; we all know the results of these actions . The oportunity lost to build a sizeable first innings score was never re-gained in the second innings ,as a result West Indies incurred the disadvantage . Who knows what could have been the results had these guys made better decisions .

  • on November 9, 2011, 0:17 GMT

    Chanderpaul has been playing brilliantly. Good work. And I hope the WICB and friends don't force you out.

  • USIndianFan on November 8, 2011, 22:25 GMT

    Obviously India are in the drivers seat. Equally obviously VVS looks to be at the end of his career. Bringing Virat in should be a good option for the remaining tests.

    BTW, I don't think the test is over yet. The wicket does seem to be playing unpredictably and a couple of early wickets to change the situation.

    Finally Sammy should be given some credit. He has brought some discipline into the team and this team looks like one that they can build on. They need to stay with this nucleus and focus on giving time for the team to mature.

  • Vijay_P_S on November 8, 2011, 22:25 GMT

    Did any one notice that Dravid (2nd most run getter) and Ponting (3rd most ..) have exactly the same average of 53.13 ?

  • on November 8, 2011, 22:01 GMT

    The match is not over yet and will probably go down to the wire, Laxman, Yuvraj and Dhoni are all struggling at test level. At this stage India may wish they had Raina instead of Yuvraj as Raina is a better finisher. Credit to the West Indies for the way they have played their cricket.

  • Balb on November 8, 2011, 21:55 GMT

    West Indies should not be looking back as to what was the reason to field such a young team. There is no turning back now, but they should find a way to resolve and bring back Gayle, the West Indian Shewag as soon as possible. He can nurture the young opening batsmen while Chanderpaul will help mentoring the middle order. The next best thing is to call on and to support Dwayne Bavo and Sarwan to be fit as quickly as possible. The team needs them both. To find room for these seasoned players, West Indies will have to rotate the youngsters among the experience both in Tests and in ODI's. It might also be a good idea to field two captains for tests and ODI's. West Indies also need Jeome Taylor back. The bowling coach if any should encourgae Bishoo mixing more of his variations including an unexpected faster straight delivery. It is unlikely they can salvage this test. They should use the spare days practising batting for spin bowling or visit the Taj Mahal while in India.

  • Maroon11 on November 8, 2011, 21:32 GMT

    West Indies in dire straits and Sammy flying kite!!!!! Now all those who think Gayle and Sarwan would not have made a positive impact, certainly knows nothing about cricket. the likes of Samuels lack consistency and discipline but perform well at domestic level. gayle and Sarwan performs well anywhere in any format. With gayle, sarwan, bravo, roach, taylor and ramdhin, west indies will be a formidable opponent to any team.......

  • rayinto on November 8, 2011, 20:43 GMT

    It's funny how Chanderpaul with the 2nd highest strike rate in the Windies team in this test (after sammy) is disqualified from playing in the one day side. I would love for him to achieve 10,000 runs in both forms of the game. Hilaire, are you listening?

  • on November 8, 2011, 20:22 GMT

    @Dravid_Gravitas Ishant was denied the wicket of kirk in 1st over. but you only talk about batting. Change your thinking, Indian bowlers also create chances but opposition bowlers are only deemed unlucky.that is unfair.

  • Dravid_Pujara_Gravitas on November 8, 2011, 20:08 GMT

    @Mayfield, can't agree more with you friend. Spot on. Gayle has been a slap on the face of the Legacy of Windies Cricket. I'm an Indian. But thinking of those Legends and their Legacy brings tears to my eyes. They played with such pride and fire. I can't help but wonder what kind of money those once in a generation Legends would have earned if they were born today. Gayle doesn't have any respect for that Legacy. He doesn't have pride in playing for Windies or for that Legacy. He is in a hurry to make a quick buck. He said he doesn't care if test cricket dies. So, let him be happy now that he is out of the national team. Let him take money, hit and then giggle. He is happy and the crowd is happy. Let the 'mediocre losers' like Shiv, Sanga, Anderson, Mahela, Lara, KP, Dravid, Kallis, Hussey, Broad, Sachin, Bell etc... play for their countries. Honestly, I'm mighty happy for the Caribbean Tigers. It's been ages since I saw this energy in your Windies Team. Good riddanance Gayle!

  • on November 8, 2011, 20:07 GMT

    A bit more positive. What is Gibson suggesting.First you have to have talent to be positive.WI always make other teams look better than they are. Take Edwards (batsman) for example (who I think is the best of the young lot), how can u leave alone balls on your wicket when the pitch is low and invariable, that ridiculous I hope he doesn't repeat that in any of the other matches. What is Powell doing in the side, making up numbers, young players are suppose to be hungry. Samuels is weak against spin, in WI last two T20 in England he got bowled through the gate by swan. It looked awful just as what happened with ashwin. I could only wish the WI luck from here, they will need it.

  • Pritt32 on November 8, 2011, 19:48 GMT

    India had a much better today, as they bowled out a fragile West Indies batting line up for 180, with some resistance from veteran Chanderpaul. Ashwin is the main the star of the show as he claimed 6 wickets. Bhaaji will find it difficult to get back in the squad, as India's bowling is showing encouraging improvements, but bearing in mind this is a mediocre West Indies team whose temperament is very weak. India needs to win the match handsomely, with Sachin and Dravid scoring steadily. If wickets do tumble, then it will be down to poor shots than pitch conditions. I still think India need to change the batting line up in the next matches as it time to give youth some time in test cricket. I would rest few of the key players and prepare them for the mammoth Australian tour ahead. Good luck to India. India must ensure they maintain high standards in the longer format of the game, as it has slipped recently.

  • Dravid_Pujara_Gravitas on November 8, 2011, 19:48 GMT

    I don't really think Windies had a stranglehold on us. Yes they were in a very strong position. But, they couldn't capitalise on that. Just a little more application from just one more batsmen and some little rub of the green going their way would have helped them. Kirk's was a soft dismissal and that was unfortunate from the Windies' perspective. I'm sure on one of the better days, he wouldn't have left it. Nevertheless, they have played wonderful cricket thus far and credit should go not just to the underrated Captain but to all the players for making it this far and giving all the Indian fans a real scare and keeping us interested in the match, instead of India just blazing away. But, the match isn't over yet. So, special best wishes to West Indies to pull this off. It has been a treat to watch your team on our soil and showing us how naturally talented you all are. The focus I see in you all is very refreshing & encouraging. Cricket needs a successful Windies. Go Windies go....

  • Vindaliew on November 8, 2011, 19:47 GMT

    "See the way Sehwag plays. He does it on every surface. But he's been playing 10 years." Men have played for more than 10 years and not even dreamed of batting like Sehwag. Gibson should find more realistic role-models for his men to try and emulate. West Indies have their own Sehwag in Gayle, but not everyone has that extra second to get their eye in and play.

  • simonviller on November 8, 2011, 19:09 GMT

    Some are still talking about Chris Gayle on every post . Here we have a youngster who is doing the job he is selected to do ,but instead of supporting him ,some are beinging critical of his efforts and want to see him fail ,just because their chosen player is not included . Reffering to others as" being ilbred " ,is not a nice thing to say about any person ,or GROUP OF individuals . Maybe that is what the present adminmistration is trying to root out within the organisation and I hope they succeed in doing so .

  • cricchic on November 8, 2011, 18:59 GMT

    Gibson saying that the batsmen should not have been so reckless..what does he expect form an inexperience bunch at the top order ......when combined did not play more than 20 test...You have to expect that they are inexperience...He wanted a young team..well Gibson you got your wish....

  • on November 8, 2011, 18:48 GMT

    Its very simple. When Sehwag scores, it makes very easy for other batsman including Sachin. Sehwag just kills the sprit of the bowler and rest of Indian batsman cash on it. In my opinion, Sachin should retire after this. If he can not make his 100th century in India, His chances in Australia are going to be zero. So retire on hign note. but will he? VVS should step aside. Virat should be groomed for Australia. VVS should be back up for Virat. Dravid will be needed in Australia. But he should be rested for 3rd test against WI and Rana should be playing. Think about future but our wise man only think about their pockets.

  • on November 8, 2011, 18:42 GMT

    @Nampally. What do you mean by "evenly poised with slight tilt towards India."

  • on November 8, 2011, 18:41 GMT

    WIN OR LOSE...WELL DONE MR GIBSON, MR SAMMY AND THE BOYZ. IF NOT ANYONE ELSE, I AM PROUD OF THE FIGHT AND PASSION. FOR YEARS NOW, NO ONE FROM MY COUNTRY HAS REPRESENTED THE WI MALE TEAM. DO I CRY, COMPLAIN, NEGATIVELY CRITICIZE AND WHINE..NO...I SUPPORT THE BOYZ...GOOO WI!

  • on November 8, 2011, 18:30 GMT

    @swarzi half-volleys were punished actually, it was the rotation of strike which didn't happen adequately. Ojha had an off-day , was driven for fours. Gayle has a poor test record against India, Sarwan is the only one they could call but again he is injured and out of form, like dwayne bravo.

  • xylo on November 8, 2011, 18:25 GMT

    ha ha..."endless references to the possibility of that 100th century"... do not forget that India is chasing, and they have a target. Under such circumstances, centuries are rare. What is more likely to happen is the other unheralded player, Rahul Dravid, will see India through, likely with help from the other more-achiever-less-record-chaser VVS Laxman, and this test will be forgotten pretty soon.

  • mrmonty on November 8, 2011, 18:13 GMT

    @Mayfield you are spot on mate. I think for years WI players have abdicated responsibilities. I don't think the quality of players has changed. It is just that other teams have become more professional and WI players have fallen behind. Classic examples are Samuels and Daren Bravo. They have a lot of flair and talent, but lack conviction as a Chaderpaul or Sammy does. Having said that I pray for a resurgence in WI cricket.

  • on November 8, 2011, 18:05 GMT

    India is very lucky to be in the position to win.If it was a good team they would have never got this chance to recover.Why India never have there best team?Virat Kohi is probably the best batsman they have,He should be in the team.Sachin should retire in high and give away to Kohli.Eventhough he is one of the greatest,if you start playing til you get kicked out of the team,your fame is going to be compromised.For an exampe; Steve w, Sanath jayasooriya and more.Or maybe after he gets his 100th hundred.Hopefully soon,this is the best series to get it.Against WI in India.

  • abiindia on November 8, 2011, 18:04 GMT

    we've never seen sachin plays this much careful and watchful

  • on November 8, 2011, 17:53 GMT

    Lets not start congratulating ourselves as the match is yet to be won.One or two wickets before lunch and India will be looking down the barrel.

  • Full-Blooded-Wallop on November 8, 2011, 17:19 GMT

    Interesting day beckons tomorrow. If one wicket falls early, the task again will become like a mountain. But if these two legends of cricket, carry on till 200, then it is India's match to lose. CHAK DE INDIA..GOOOO :)

  • Mayfield on November 8, 2011, 17:07 GMT

    @swarzi. I am tired of all the posters who keep talking about Gayle. Gayle REFUSED TO SIGN A CENTRAL CONTRACT. GAYLE SHOWED UP IN ENGLAND THE DAY BEFORE THE FIRST MATCH. WHY? Because Mr. Gayle plays for money not country. So stop all this nonsense about Gayle. And for the record, Gayle is not great. Go look at Sobers, Lara, Kanhai, Richards,Tendulkar, Kallis, Sangakarra, Dravid, Chanderpaul, and the list goes on. Gayle, in my opinion does not come close to any of the above mentioned. PLEASE!

  • Reclkless on November 8, 2011, 17:02 GMT

    @ Trapper439 Yes it is.And they proved t also.

  • ibbani on November 8, 2011, 16:50 GMT

    Ashwin, Ojha and Bhajji can be the next spin triplet if at all Bhajji is selected. Aravind, Umesh, Zaheer and Ishanth all will company a good pace attack. Viru,Gauti,Rahu, Sachin, Yuvi/Kohli, Dhoni could be a dominat Indian team which can win in Aussie continent.I also see Mithun and Sresanth in the pace dept who can tour the oz series. BCCI has bred a good pace attack as of now, but the only thing is that they shud not be picking up too many injuries so that they miss important matches.

  • on November 8, 2011, 16:48 GMT

    Indian cricket has gone long way in last decade. If my query is correct on cricinfo, then since 2001, in forth inning india have won 19 matches, drawn 13 matches and lost only 12. Great record for forth inning.

  • Nampally on November 8, 2011, 16:46 GMT

    Mr. Aga: Your headline is bit of an "overkill"! .WI never had the "stranglehold" on India. Yes WI were in strong position at the end of Day 2. But if India could dismiss WI for <200 in the second innings, the match was still wide open. At the end of Day 3 that is what happened. India dismissed WI for under 200 and need 276 to win.India is already > half way there with 8 wkts in hand. So it is still anybody's game. Neither team can claim to have a "stranglehold" to actually strangle the other team yet. The game is evenly poised with slight tilt towards India. Thats all you can say. I would even venture in saying that if Tendulkar was not "Rusty" due to lack of practice he would have the same dominating power as Sehwag had shown. If he fights his way thru' and with Dravid at one end, you might even see India winning the test despite your headlines of WI stranglehold.If I were the Indian captain, I would get Dhoni padded up being in form and not rusty like VVS or Yuvraj. Lets GO INdia!

  • swarzi on November 8, 2011, 16:23 GMT

    I guess after WI lose this test match, good sense would prevail and the necessaey heads will roll to pave the way for our best players to respresent WI in world cricket. Lots of song and dance were made by Gibson and Co because WI barely beat Bangladesh the lowest ranked team in the world. I'm hearing a dfferent tune to the same song now. It's pathetic to see young promising WI batters who're not quite ready for the big stage, nervously tapping innocuous half volleys back to the Indian spinners; and creating so much pressure on themselves until they get out - while Chris Gayle, arguably the best, but undisputedly the most dangerous batsman in the world is prevented from playing for his country, because some ill-bred WIBC cricket officials do not like his frankness and candour! It's unfair also to push our young talents into leagues to which it's evident they don't quite belong to score at painstaking strike rates of 30 and 5 - that' 112 balls for 63 runs or 41 for 2 in this modern era!

  • Trapper439 on November 8, 2011, 16:17 GMT

    @indianzen: You're seriously calling the WICB more egocentric than the BCCI? Seriously? Wow. Just... wow.

  • Y2SJ on November 8, 2011, 16:12 GMT

    I think WI has improved well. They have a positive captain in Sammy. If they get a couple of good quicks, they can climb up the ratings.

  • Mayfield on November 8, 2011, 16:01 GMT

    A lot of people on this board lay the blame on this teams performance on Sammy. Sammy is not the problem. The problem is the batsmen not doing their job or barely doing their job. For example, I don't hear anyone talking about Samuels. Here is a guy that just oozes talent and class as a batsman, but yet has an average in the twenties. What accounts for that? We need players like Samuels to stand up and score runs on a consistent basis. He has yet to do that. Maybe, he is all show but no action. So do you blame Sammy for this the coach, the WICB? Or does it come down to the individual? Chanderpaul does not exude the class of Samuels, yet look at his performances. We need more players like chanderpaul and less of the players who flatter to deceive.

  • on November 8, 2011, 15:59 GMT

    @ ultimatewarrior thats a captain's worry. the the thing is ashwin was looking more effective than ojha today with the third days pitch, congo ashwin way to go

  • ranjit.sg on November 8, 2011, 15:56 GMT

    S Aga, You seem to have forgotten that the match is still not over. India might be favourites, but WI still stand a fair chance of winning. So instead of counting them out already, you'd do well to keep the possibility of an Indian defeat open.

  • on November 8, 2011, 15:53 GMT

    Whatever the outcome, this was an engrossing and historic game. Sachin reached 15,000 runs and counting, a never to be reached plateau. Rahul was with him, the two highest scores in Tests at the pitch at the same time, happened in the 1st also,, a rarity itself. Chanders scored another defiant 100 and once again worked to save the side (Gibson and Management owe him apoligies for trying to diminish his years pf service). Ashwin had a dream debut 9 for.... Maybe the crowning feat woukld be Sachin 100 hundreds tomorrow.

  • Nampally on November 8, 2011, 15:31 GMT

    Gibson says "We did not bowl as well as in the first innings". He forgets that in the first innings, WI were lucky in getting both Gambhir & Sehwag out, a freak Runout & an equally freak stumping.This was when the pair were batting at 7 runs/over. This time Sehwag was out - played on. If neither of the freak outs did not occur, it was quite likely WI would not have got the first innings lead.Also Sachin & VVS are averaging over 55 runs since 2008 in 55 tests or more. In the first innings both failed due to bad strokes not good balls.So Gibson should thank his fortune not bowling at the right spots.. Ashwin bowled very well to ensure his spot in the Test team. He was dropped in favour of out of form Harbhajan for the past 2 years. Ojha met the same fate. Strangely ojha bowled only 7 overs on Day 3 after his 6 wkts in the first. Was he unwell or injured? The game is still wide open. Sachin & Rahul have to stay there and chase the target down. Dhoni should be the next guy in. Good Luck.

  • NairUSA on November 8, 2011, 15:10 GMT

    Good game still. Windies came as underdogs and they have proven they can fight. Hope India pulls through the required runs tomorrow. Best of luck.

  • zico123 on November 8, 2011, 15:09 GMT

    India batsmen should concentrate, make good shot selections and should win comfortably, all the best

  • peterss on November 8, 2011, 15:04 GMT

    Harbhajan is gone now. Ashwin has announced his arrival to replace the below par bhajji. Great job ashwin.... future looks extremely bright in all formats

  • on November 8, 2011, 14:56 GMT

    I am happy it will be Ashwin and Ojha who will go to the Australia than Bhaji. He has never been a success abroad and time to try people other than King or singh. It is a delight to watch Ishant and Yadav bowl at pace in and around the 140s....

  • Vilander on November 8, 2011, 14:54 GMT

    wonder where jerome taylor is, he would have been effective today. Roach is injured, if WI have Roach,Jerome,Gayle,sarwan back they can beat India easy. India is so vulnerable right now, so many innings below 300 i wonder if this is the same mighty team of the last 2 years.

  • Rakim on November 8, 2011, 14:54 GMT

    What's wrong with WI's bowlers. I wanna see Malcolm Marshalls of my era

  • the_blue_android on November 8, 2011, 14:34 GMT

    India needed 120 runs against WI a decade ago and we lost! Who will be the new Franklin Rose?

  • indianzen on November 8, 2011, 14:31 GMT

    Every country has good players, its the board, selectors and coach should bring out the talents. India has a good BCCI which can Win, earn, learn and teach about administration and unluckily WICB is Egoistic...

  • ultimatewarrior on November 8, 2011, 14:25 GMT

    Congrats to Ashwin to achieve best performance in first test after a long time in India...only regret Pragyan Ojha can be given more overs through the day....

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  • ultimatewarrior on November 8, 2011, 14:25 GMT

    Congrats to Ashwin to achieve best performance in first test after a long time in India...only regret Pragyan Ojha can be given more overs through the day....

  • indianzen on November 8, 2011, 14:31 GMT

    Every country has good players, its the board, selectors and coach should bring out the talents. India has a good BCCI which can Win, earn, learn and teach about administration and unluckily WICB is Egoistic...

  • the_blue_android on November 8, 2011, 14:34 GMT

    India needed 120 runs against WI a decade ago and we lost! Who will be the new Franklin Rose?

  • Rakim on November 8, 2011, 14:54 GMT

    What's wrong with WI's bowlers. I wanna see Malcolm Marshalls of my era

  • Vilander on November 8, 2011, 14:54 GMT

    wonder where jerome taylor is, he would have been effective today. Roach is injured, if WI have Roach,Jerome,Gayle,sarwan back they can beat India easy. India is so vulnerable right now, so many innings below 300 i wonder if this is the same mighty team of the last 2 years.

  • on November 8, 2011, 14:56 GMT

    I am happy it will be Ashwin and Ojha who will go to the Australia than Bhaji. He has never been a success abroad and time to try people other than King or singh. It is a delight to watch Ishant and Yadav bowl at pace in and around the 140s....

  • peterss on November 8, 2011, 15:04 GMT

    Harbhajan is gone now. Ashwin has announced his arrival to replace the below par bhajji. Great job ashwin.... future looks extremely bright in all formats

  • zico123 on November 8, 2011, 15:09 GMT

    India batsmen should concentrate, make good shot selections and should win comfortably, all the best

  • NairUSA on November 8, 2011, 15:10 GMT

    Good game still. Windies came as underdogs and they have proven they can fight. Hope India pulls through the required runs tomorrow. Best of luck.

  • Nampally on November 8, 2011, 15:31 GMT

    Gibson says "We did not bowl as well as in the first innings". He forgets that in the first innings, WI were lucky in getting both Gambhir & Sehwag out, a freak Runout & an equally freak stumping.This was when the pair were batting at 7 runs/over. This time Sehwag was out - played on. If neither of the freak outs did not occur, it was quite likely WI would not have got the first innings lead.Also Sachin & VVS are averaging over 55 runs since 2008 in 55 tests or more. In the first innings both failed due to bad strokes not good balls.So Gibson should thank his fortune not bowling at the right spots.. Ashwin bowled very well to ensure his spot in the Test team. He was dropped in favour of out of form Harbhajan for the past 2 years. Ojha met the same fate. Strangely ojha bowled only 7 overs on Day 3 after his 6 wkts in the first. Was he unwell or injured? The game is still wide open. Sachin & Rahul have to stay there and chase the target down. Dhoni should be the next guy in. Good Luck.