West Indies v Australia, 1st Test, Bridgetown, 2nd Day April 8, 2012

Clarke's split slips

ESPNcricinfo staff
ESPNcricinfo presents the Plays of the Day from the second day of the first Test in Barbados

Slip of the Day
Very few edges flew at catchable height through the slips cordon on day one, and the pattern continued on the second morning as Darren Bravo and Shivnarine Chanderpaul benefited from a steady stream of runs to third man. Driven to vary his fields, Michael Clarke split his slips, posting a first, a fourth and a pair of gullies. As so often happens, Peter Siddle then prompted an edge through the gap, his short of a length delivery swished at by Bravo and sailing around head height through the region where a third might have caught it.

Riposte of the Day
Shane Watson worked up a head of steam with the ball, the pitch offering a little more pace than he might have found the day before. Having disposed of Bravo, Watson lowered his sights on Darren Sammy, who had made his presence felt by hitting a faltering Nathan Lyon out of the attack. Watson's fourth ball to the West Indies captain was short and skidding, striking Sammy a fierce blow on the helmet as he ducked. A new helmet was called for, and Watson must have felt himself in control as he ran in to deliver the next ball. But Sammy's riposte, a scorching straight drive to a ball that was in no way asking for such treatment, was compelling. Thus chastened, Watson followed up with another bouncer, this time Sammy ducking safely underneath it and walking down the pitch to meet the bowler's indignant stare.

Referral of the Day
It took until the 136th over of the innings for the DRS to be employed, in an innings that up to that point had witnessed scarcely a single lbw appeal. Lyon had the honour of asking for the review, as Chanderpaul played pad then bat to an offbreak that straightened from around the wicket. Replays confirmed the closeness of the call but Lyon was to miss his first wicket by millimetres. As had happened to Ryan Harris in the first Test against Sri Lanka in Galle last year, Lyon was denied by the vagaries of the review laws, which state that more than half the ball must be striking more than half the off or leg stump to overturn an original not-out verdict.

Catch of the Day
While the fielding coach Steve Rixon is away on IPL duty, Australia's players put down four catches of varying difficulty over the first four sessions of the match. But two balls after Lyon's referral was denied, he drew an outside edge from the bat of Kemar Roach, which flew fine between the wicketkeeper Matthew Wade and Clarke at slip. To snick anywhere in the vicinity of Clarke's left hand is to invite dismissal and sure enough the captain plucked the chance with some nonchalance - and no little irritation at the chances that had been spurned earlier in the innings.