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April 26, 2012
West Indies 218 and 173 for 5 (Chanderpaul 69, Clarke 3-34) need another 197 runs to beat Australia 328 and 259 (Ponting 57, Cowan 55, Shillingford 4-100, Roach 3-40)
Scorecard and ball-by-ball details
For 16 years Australian bowlers have been trying to chisel Shivnarine Chanderpaul from the crease. It was fitting, therefore, that on the day when he squirreled away his 10,000th Test run, Chanderpaul spent the afternoon doing what comes naturally: obstructing, counter-attacking and above all frustrating Australia's Test cricketers as they sought a way into the West Indies lower order in their push for victory.
But as has so often been the case, Chanderpaul's fight appeared insufficient to save West Indies. His departure to a successful Australian review in the final over of the fourth day in Dominica gave Australia an enormous chance of finishing the match early on the fifth day, with West Indies still requiring 197 runs for a highly unlikely victory with five wickets in hand and only one specialist batsman - Narsingh Deonarine on 11 not out - still in play.
It was a depressing conclusion for West Indies, who started the day by celebrating Shane Shillingford's ten-wicket match haul and spent much of the afternoon dreaming of an upset as Chanderpaul and Darren Bravo compiled a century stand in their chase of 370. Michael Clarke tried all sorts of things to break that partnership and the success eventually came through Shane Watson, though it was Clarke's part-time spin that proved Australia's best weapon.
Clarke was the man who got rid of Chanderpaul for 69 from the first ball of the day's last over. Clarke had extracted some significant turn from the Windsor Park pitch earlier in the innings and again his spin troubled the batsman, who played and missed a ball ripping in from outside off stump. The umpire's decision of not out was reviewed by Clarke and replays showed Chanderpaul had been struck in line and the ball would have hit the stumps.
It was the perfect end for Australia, who had started with three early wickets before the Chanderpaul-Bravo partnership took hold. Ben Hilfenhaus struck before a run had been scored when Adrian Barath clipped a ball off his pads and was snapped up brilliantly by a diving Ed Cowan at square leg. There was some resistance to come from Kraigg Brathwaite and Kieran Powell, but Clarke's decision to bowl himself proved an inspired move.
Brathwaite was on 14 when he tried to work Clarke from off stump through leg side and it was an ill-advised choice of stroke. The umpire Tony Hill gave him out lbw and Brathwaite's review did not save him, replays showing umpire's call for both impact on off stump and whether the ball would have clipped the bails. A few overs later Powell, on 24, drove loosely and simply missed a ball that turned in between bat and pad and was bowled by Clarke.
But that brought Chanderpaul to the crease and he was keen to keep the scoreboard ticking at a healthy rate, ensuring the ones and twos piled up without taking unnecessary risks. One such single, tucked through the leg-side off Clarke, brought Chanderpaul to the milestone of 10,000 Test runs, a feat he acknowledged by removing his helmet and raising his bat modestly, aware that his job had only just begun.
Chanderpaul waited on the bad balls - a David Warner long hop was pulled over the infield for four and there were occasional cuts and drives that reached the boundary - and otherwise acquired his runs through familiar methods. His half-century came from his 90th ball and he was congratulated by Bravo, who unusually for any stand involving Chanderpaul was the quieter partner.
Bravo was happy when Nathan Lyon dropped short and he was able to cut with ferocity, and he showed his deftness by running Shane Watson behind point neatly for another boundary. But it was Watson who eventually had the better of the battle when he enticed an edge behind and Bravo, on 47, was disconsolate as he walked from the field. The 110-run stand was over, and with it went a large chunk of West Indies' hopes.
Not that they had ever been favourites, despite finishing the Australians off in the morning for the addition of 59 runs. Shillingford finished with 4 for 100 to give him match figures of 10 for 219 in his first Test at his home ground of Windsor Park, and he was the first West Indian spinner to take ten wickets in a Test since Lance Gibbs in 1966, and only the second to do it in the Caribbean, after Wilf Ferguson achieved the feat in Trinidad in 1948.
Shillingford gave West Indies a good start to the day by removing Michael Hussey, the last of Australia's recognised batsmen, for 32 when he found a thin edge that was snapped up by Darren Sammy at slip. Ryan Harris soon followed when he top-edged a slog sweep off Deonarine and was caught by the wicketkeeper Carlton Baugh for 9.
Hilfenhaus gave Shillingford his tenth when he pushed forward and was brilliantly caught at silly point by Brathwaite, who thrust his right hand out as the ball seemed destined to pass him. Mitchell Starc and Lyon added a few late runs in a 22-run partnership for the final wicket before Kemar Roach finished the job by bowling Starc for 21.
That left West Indies needing 370, and only once before had they chased down such a high target to win a Test, in their world-record pursuit of 418 in Antigua in 2003. They had reached 370 in the fourth innings of a Test three times in the past five years, but the challenge was always going to be significant on a tricky Windsor Park pitch.
Brydon Coverdale is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo. He tweets hereFeeds: Brydon Coverdale
© ESPN EMEA Ltd.
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