West Indies v Australia, 2nd ODI, St Vincent

Almighty heaves, risky leaves

Plays of the Day from the 2nd ODI between West Indies and Australia at St Vincent

Daniel Brettig

March 18, 2012

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Peter Forrest watches his edge being caught at slip, West Indies v Australia, 2nd ODI, St Vincent, March 18, 2012
Peter Forrest was the second of Kemar Roach's two victims in the seventh over of the game © AFP

The double-strike
This was no kind of pitch for fast bowlers but in the seventh over of the day Kemar Roach showed how pace bowling of direction and thought could be just as dastardly at Arnos Vale as any spinner. David Warner was his first victim, undone by a delivery that skidded through low rather than stopping in the surface as many others did. Four balls later Peter Forrest followed, edging a ball that was fast, full and challenging the batsman to offer something. Forrest's defensive bat could only result in an edge that was well snaffled by Darren Sammy.

The maiden
First impressions can be important, particularly for spin bowlers, as a good start can often help confidence to grow and greater returns to be claimed from subsequent overs. So it was for Sunil Narine, who began his stint by beating Michael Hussey twice and rendering him shotless otherwise in a first-up maiden. Hussey would go on to be the first of Narine's four victims - a wicket the spinners of England, Sri Lanka and India have all grown to consider a precious one.

The leave
Maybe Kieran Powell got a speck of dust in his eye. Maybe he did not expect Brett Lee's first ball to be on target, full and swinging subtly back into him. Or maybe his mind was still in the dressing room. Whatever the reason, Powell's decision to leave Lee's first ball was catastrophic, resulting in the clearest lbw possible. Lee barely needed to turn around towards the umpire in his appeal, so plain was the decision, and so grave was Powell's error.

The flurry
Only three sixes had been struck all day before Kieron Pollard muscled three in four overs. All three were different shots, all three critical as the West Indies sought a first win over Australia since 2006. The first was pulled convulsively over midwicket from Daniel Christian, reducing the pressure that had been brought to bear by the loss of Darren Bravo's wicket. The second was perhaps the pick, an inside-out cover drive also from Christian that cleared the rope easily. And the third was an effortless straight hit that forced Xavier Doherty's removal from the attack. All were hammer blows for Australia.

Daniel Brettig is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo. He tweets here

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Daniel Brettig Assistant editor Daniel Brettig had been a journalist for eight years when he joined ESPNcricinfo, but his fascination with cricket dates back to the early 1990s, when his dad helped him sneak into the family lounge room to watch the end of day-night World Series matches well past bedtime. Unapologetically passionate about indie music and the South Australian Redbacks, Daniel's chief cricketing achievement was to dismiss Wisden Almanack editor Lawrence Booth in the 2010 Ashes press match in Perth - a rare Australian victory that summer.
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