West Indies v Australia, 2nd Test, Port-of-Spain, 5th day

Rain ends prospect of intriguing finish

The Report by Andrew McGlashan

April 19, 2012

Comments: 91 | Text size: A | A

Australia 311 (Hussey 73, Watson 56, Roach 5-105) and 160 for 8 dec (Ponting 41, Roach 5-41) drew with West Indies 257 (Chanderpaul 94, Lyon 5-68) and 53 for 2
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Ben Hilfenhaus struck early in West Indies' run chase, West Indies v Australia, 2nd Test, Port-of-Spain, April 19, 2012
Ben Hilfenhaus made early inroads for Australia before rain closed in for the final time © AFP
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As it had threatened to do the weather had the final say in Port-of-Spain and end the prospect of a fascinating finish after both captains took up each other's challenge to force a positive result. Michael Clarke declared to leave West Indies a target of 215 in 61 overs then Darren Sammy promoted himself to No. 3 as the hosts reached 53 for 2 when they were forced off which meant Australia retained the Frank Worrell Trophy.

The initial asking rate for West Indies of 3.52 was considerably more than had been managed for a sustained period at any stage of the game. However, Sammy's attacking mindset put his team ahead of the rate as he took on Australia's bowlers, especially Ben Hilfenhaus who he hit for 14 off three deliveries.

Hilfenhaus, though, had also given Australia their opening with a strong new-ball spell. He trapped Kieran Powell lbw, after he had been promoted to open, with a delivery that swung back (for the second time in the game Powell made the wrong decision over a review) then removed Adrian Barath with one that climbed from a length and took the edge to first slip.

But from 13 for 2 Sammy responded with two early boundaries off Shane Watson to show his mind was not turning towards the draw although some of his earlier fielding settings had suggested otherwise. Darren Bravo, who could have provided an anchor to the innings, was content to play quietly alongside his captain before the clouds rolled in.

Smart stats

  • Kemar Roach became the first West Indian since Curtly Ambrose and the fifth West Indian overall to pick up a ten-wicket match haul against Australia. Ambrose had done so in Adelaide (1993) when West Indies won by one run.
  • Roach also became the fourth West Indian and the 11th bowler overall to pick up a ten-wicket haul in Trinidad. The last West Indian to achieve the feat was Ambrose in 1994 when West Indies bowled England out for 46.
  • It is also the 17th occasion that a West Indies bowler has had twin five-wicket hauls in a Test. Kenny Benjamin was the previous bowler to do in Nottingham in 1995.
  • Roach's 5for 41 is fifth on the list of best bowling performances by a West Indian bowler against Australia in Trinidad. The best is Vanburn Holder's 6 for 28 in 1978.
  • Australia declared their third innings on 160 for 8. It is only the third time that Australia have declared at a total below 200 with seven or more wickets lost. However, on the previous two occasions they won the match.
  • There were ten leg-before dismissals in the match. It is the seventh time in a West Indian-Australia Test that there have been ten or more lbw dismissals.
  • Australia's run-rate in the match (2.39) is the second-lowest for them in a Test against West Indies since 1990 (min 1000 balls bowled). The lowest (2.30) in the same period also came in Trinidad in 1991.

Australia had signalled their intent immediately after lunch when Michael Hussey lofted the first ball of the second session over long-off against Narsingh Deonarine then slog-swept another boundary to signal the intent. Sammy immediately set his field deep as Hussey and Matthew Wade started to play tip-and-run cricket.

Hussey dragged Kemar Roach into his stumps, as he tried to glide the ball to third man, and three balls later Hilfenhaus had his off stump pegged back as Roach became the first West Indies bowler since Curtly Ambrose in 1993 to take ten in a match against Australia.

The visitors had found progress hard going during the morning session and after losing Clarke and Ricky Ponting in quick succession had to guard against a more damaging collapse. Australia's first boundary did not come until the 10th over of the day when Ponting flicked Fidel Edwards to fine leg and two balls later Ponting hooked a well-directed bouncer straight to deep square-leg.

It was due reward for Edwards, who had toiled without luck during this match while Roach picked up the wickets, and meant Ponting did not covert his hard work. His 41 was more than he had made in his previous eight international innings combined but the mode of dismissal was likely to start more debate.

Two overs later West Indies' morning got even better thanks to spark of fielding brilliance from Sammy. Clarke pushed fractionally early at a delivery that may have stopped in the surface, sending the ball back down the pitch but fair distance to Sammy's right in his follow through. However, Sammy stuck out his hand and with the ball almost past him clung onto the catch before a nonchalant celebration.

It left the intriguing situation of Australia being 149 ahead with 82 overs left in match and also having an injured James Pattinson in the dressing room. Shillingford began his latest exacting spell of the match as he teased and tested Hussey and Wade. The ball beat the outside edge and took the inside edge but nothing quite went to hand for West Indies.

Shortly before Australia started to release some of the pressure as Wade pulled Sammy for a boundary and Hussey swept Shillingford and that was sign of things to come but in the end the efforts of both sides were futile.

Andrew McGlashan is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

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Posted by   on (April 21, 2012, 12:05 GMT)

@RandyOz, remember the Aussies got skittled for 47 in SA by SA with Steyn, Philander and Morkel. England got skittled by Jerome Taylor. The next 3 matches involved England racking up high scores which were all drawn, then the return series, which preceded the 2009 ashes saw the Windies beaten 2-0 comprehensively.

Posted by Hammond on (April 21, 2012, 9:53 GMT)

@RandyOz- Short memory mate. Last time England and Australia met (in Australia) England wiped the floor 3-1. There will be no quaking in pommy boots just because Australia salvaged a draw against the number seven test side in the world. Boy those 3 ashes losses since 2005 must have really, really stung.

Posted by rahulcricket007 on (April 21, 2012, 9:22 GMT)

@RANDYOZ . I DON'T KNOW ON WHAT BASIS YOU R SAYING THAT ENG ARE AFRAID OF CLARKE . AUS ARE STRUGGLING TO BEAT A TEAM LIKE WI . LOSE TO NZ IN THEIR HOME . YOUR OPENERS ESPECIALLY WARNER IS LIKE A WALKING WKT JUST LIKE SEHWAG . PONTING IS OUT OF FORM & SOON WILL BE OUT OF TEAM . FAST BOWLERS LIKE PATTINSON ARE INJURY PRONE . WADE IS ALSO ANOTHER WALKING WKT TO SPINNERS (ESPECIALLY SWANN LIKE LEFTIES). ON THE OTHER HAND ENG HAD A SOLID OPENER IN FORM OF COOK . TROTT & KP ARE SOLID PLAYERS & ARE IN FORM . THEY ALSO HAVE A GOOD BACK UP OPTIONS IN FAST BOWLING . ALSO THE NEXT ASHES WILL BE IN ENG , SO IT WILL BE HOME ADVANTAGE TO THEM .

Posted by anver777 on (April 21, 2012, 4:26 GMT)

Certainly if not for rain it would have been an interesting finish to this math....... WI were very positive in their chase, specially Sammy who promoted himself in the batting order for some quick runs. A sporty declaration by positive Clarke in the 2nd innings is also deserved some applause !!!!!

Posted by RandyOZ on (April 21, 2012, 4:10 GMT)

@VivGilchrist - not to mention get skittled for 51 by virtually the same attack, headed by one of the greatest (sic) spin bowlers of all time, Sulimen Benn. Had the imports not been there they were heading down single digit alley!

Posted by RandyOZ on (April 21, 2012, 4:06 GMT)

It's a shame the rain came because Lyon lost his chance to skittle the Windies again! We will all see how good he really is when Swann fails miserably against them, just as he did against Pakistan. Clarke is running rings around Strauss already and they aren't even on the same continent. Boy you poms must be starting to shake.

Posted by pat_one_back on (April 21, 2012, 2:46 GMT)

@snick_to_backward_point -Clarke had the series stitched with a draw yet risked it to throw down a calculated challenge many here think the Windies would have walked in (not on form of past 2 innings IMO), leadership takes courage, confidence inspires performance. Strauss does not have the kit bag for such a positive approach to winning test cricket. Clarke is defining Test captaincy in the T20 era where results are more important than ever to the success of Test cricket. Kudos to Sammy however Windies needed the win to keep the series alive.

Posted by RednWhiteArmy on (April 21, 2012, 0:47 GMT)

@baggygreen

Still having nightmares about 3 defeats by and INNINGS & 300+ runs on home soil, against the team your so desperate to beat? haha

Here's a stat for you, australia havent won a series in england for over a DECADE...hows all your injured bowlers going? good....alrighty then cos we dont want any excuses when we embarrass you yet again

Posted by heathrf1974 on (April 21, 2012, 0:46 GMT)

@Front-Foot-Lounge, you assume Australian cricket is average because you think WI cricket is average. You may think you're bagging out Australia but you are actually bagging out both sides. Last year WI gave India a fright in India which is no mean feat. They are a side on the improve. Also both tests have assisted the bowlers greatly and are more like subcontinent wickets. I think Australia are doing okay under conditions that do not suit them. It would be interesting to see if England could handle turning conditions any better.

Posted by   on (April 21, 2012, 0:18 GMT)

Cheyne246: By your logic, Australia won 6 out of 8 innings in the recent series vs SA and lost a game only because of 1 bad innings! If you don't want to give credit to Australia dominating WI in both games here, you better give ZERO credit to SA for drawing the series 1-1 at home. Because over all the sessions, Australia own the most and dominated in the series!

Posted by 2.14istherunrate on (April 20, 2012, 23:12 GMT)

Neither side had too much to lose yesterdayby attacking. They would have known it would rain again in all probability. Nonetheless full on attack is to be encouraged and particularly by WI. They can still draw this series. Both sides are rebuilding and this makes for a lack of certainty in the play. I must point out that along with Holding and Cosier I too was rhapsodising over Powell- looks a bit classy, i would reckon. AlthoughS'ford bowled long and economically is he really a better bet than Bishoo? Aussie bowling is now Hilfenhaus and Lyon plus Watson- looking a bit thin on the ground.Will Harris make it to the start? Will Hussey open the bowling? Re Holding about Cowan- his remarks were made in respect to Warner more. Don't know why Watson does not open. Will Clarke go and apologise to Katich? Finally well bowled,Roach- great hostility and line.

Posted by   on (April 20, 2012, 22:37 GMT)

I just want to share with everyone just in case you did not check. Interim Captain Sarwan scored 105 runs for his county team. He is inform and already in England. I hope members of the WI selecting committee, The Chairman, The chief selector, The coach and maybe the captain or someone inform them about performances and results of the English county cricket. WI cricket fans should start campaign and support for the return of Gayle, Sarwan, Ramdin and someone mentioned Taylor to the test team to bring back some respect and dignity to our histroy of West Indian cricket. Fans should show support for Sarwan for test captain since Gayle is contracted most of the seasons for 20twenty tournaments.

Posted by Mitcher on (April 20, 2012, 22:24 GMT)

@Snick_To_Backward_Point: I guess all of us weren't aware that you alone set the benchmarks for quality captaincy. I can only deduce you don't rate your own captain considering his atrocious efforts as captain and with the bat in one of your 'benchmark' tours. Telling you don't include Sri Lanka, where Clarke has already led a series win. When did England, let alone Strauss, last manage that? And current form? You wish to speak about current form? Go ahead sir...

Posted by Meety on (April 20, 2012, 21:22 GMT)

@Mayan Viljoen - agree with the first sentence (although the fight in Banga in Tests is questionable). What I would like to point out in reference to "... but what exactly makes him better than..." the other captains you named. Of the captains you listed, (with the exception of Jayawardene), none of them are as aggressive or tactically aware as Clarke. I don't think anybody says that Inzi was a great captain (captaining Pakistan is a unigue proposition), so I would say Misbah has done the best job since Imran, he has done a great job uniting his team, however he is very defensive, (could be argued that is the nature of the UAE pitches). Strauss is a fine leader of men (IMO), but he is very quick to go defensive, same with Smith, inspirational coming out with a broken arm in a series already decided, but he'll instantly place a 3rd man if a couple of shots go in that direction. Mahela has done a fine job with limited bowling resources.

Posted by Harry_Kool on (April 20, 2012, 21:13 GMT)

@Front-Foot-Lunge, The only thing poeple don't care about are your inane posts. If you can't add anything positive, don't post.

Posted by Meety on (April 20, 2012, 21:12 GMT)

@Snick_To_Backward_Point - so far Clarke has led Oz in 5 test series & is undefeated. I know you are primarily trolling but I'm bored so I feel like having an arguement or three. Apart from the fact that Clarke has been universally acknowledged as being astute with field placings, bowling changes & tactics. On so many threads you have bagged Oz as being ordinary, yet under Clarke, they are undefeated over the course of a series 5 times! Clarke marshalled his "ordinary" troops to a series win, which your boys under Strauss were unable to do. You didn't mention SL in SL did you. Until this series in the WI, Clarke has hit a ton against every opponent as well, including arguably the best innings this century against the Saffas on a seaming track, against arguably the best pace bowling attack assembled in the last 6 years. He has managed to coerce an "ordinary" spinner in Lyon to ave sub 30 after 12 tests, & has had to lead athe most inexperienced Ozzy bowling line up in over TWO DECADES!!

Posted by JG2704 on (April 20, 2012, 19:33 GMT)

@Mayan Viljoen ctd PS Clarke has captained against SA late last year. The series was drawn 1-1 with Australia levelling it after losing the test where they were bowled out for 47. Says something about the guy that he can pick his players up after such a bad defeat in the very next test where they chased down 300+ to win.

Posted by Snick_To_Backward_Point on (April 20, 2012, 18:28 GMT)

JG2704 I love that type of slant "one recent example" as though there was a whole cupboard full of choice examples we could refer to a la Clarke's prowess as a captain. Clarke HASN'T been tested yet - nowhere near. For us to see whether he's a good captain he needs to lead the following tours: Eng (home or away, doesn't matter, we'll thrash you on current form), SA in Australia - for some reason Saffers seem to have a blind spot when it comes to playing at home, imo they're a far tougher test when they play away - Pakistan in the UAE and India in India. Let's discuss how good he stacks up when he's completed those tours of duty before we start lauding his magnificence. 'Brilliant' tactical decisions against New Zealand and the Windies aren't de rigeur I'm afraid.

Posted by Cheyne246 on (April 20, 2012, 15:27 GMT)

After all that has been said and done...despite what the Aussie fans say..they are yet to win a series on the Caribbean tour. The W.I fans say they would have won with sammy blazing and the Aussies say there is no way the Windies could have made the runs in a fourth innings, however, the outsiders comments are quite interesting. The fact is that the Windies are playing well...no doubts about it. If Baugh had taken Hussy for 5 on that first morning the wntire complexion of the game would have changed. Yes Australia leads the test series and will retain the trophy, but the Windies have won more sessions in both test matches. If the Windies win the last test all three series would have draw and from a West Indian perspective, that is top work against Australia. If anyone said that would happen before the series they would have been admitted to a mental institution...and don't forget, the Aussies drew the series by virtue of a silly run out..or the West indies would have one in the bag!

Posted by JG2704 on (April 20, 2012, 15:24 GMT)

@Mayan Viljoen - one recent example where Clarke outdoes Smith by ambitious captaincy.The 1st test which looked destined for a draw Clarke declared behind and bowled WI out cheap and eked out the win.Smith vs NZ in the last test for starters was the only player not to step on the gas in the 2nd inns in the search for fast runs so he could put NZ in earlier.And IMO he left his declaration too late.He left NZ a target of 387 and if I was captain and had Steyn,Villande, Morkel in my attack and time was against me I'd be confident of declaring at around the 300 mark esp against NZ.Also he could have given SA even more time by dropping himself down the order and promoting faster scorers above him.As an England fan it was good but if I was a SA fan I'd be peeved that we could have been nr1 with a little more ambition.I've not followed all the SA games but the fact that on paper they have such an awesome line up but are only drawing or eking out one test series wins it spell underachievement

Posted by   on (April 20, 2012, 15:15 GMT)

@RAHULCRICKET dude dont spoil the things by involving India into this West Indies vs Australia series.The Whole World knew how India were mediocre in the last two overseas tour .We should appreciate this young West Indian outfit who in the absence of Gayle,Sarwan,Bravo,Pollard,Taylor etc putting up the fight against the the same Aussie side whom literally Crushed India throughout their i home series.Best of luck to both the team for the Third test

Posted by Drew12 on (April 20, 2012, 14:42 GMT)

@Mayan Viljoen the 47 all out occured within the CONTEXT of a series of test matches IN SA, that is, AUS PLAYING AWAY IN SA, the result of the which was a drawn series 1-1. Can anybody not understand the fact that very recently, late last year, AUS and SA played in SA and SA did not win the series!!! Until SA beat AUS stop talking about how the current AUS team is to be fearful of SA. SA failed to win the home series. End of story.

Posted by Mary_786 on (April 20, 2012, 14:37 GMT)

Noticed that the Windies great Michael Holding has stated publicly that Cowan will not be good enough to face the POMs in the ashes, Aussie selectors need to take action and drop Cowan as he is not up to the standard required. Please get either of Quiney, Khawaja or Marsh into the opener slot if they have good start to the Shield season.

Posted by 5wombats on (April 20, 2012, 13:16 GMT)

@rahulcricket007 on (April 20 2012, 02:00 AM GMT) - what you seem to be saying is that you don't have to be that good a side in order to beat india. We agree with that. Everyone beats india (any format) once they step outside of india. You were the one who brought india into this conversation about Aus V WI. Given india's recent appalling away record it would be wiser for india fans to keep quiet. india had their chance in England last year - they blew it. Then india went to Australia - and their fans thought india would walk all over Aus. But india blew it, AGAIN. Defo time for india fans to be quiet....

Posted by CarlH on (April 20, 2012, 13:15 GMT)

listen, the WI team doesn't "miss" anyone!...those who have chosen to play IPL are the ones who miss the WI team, because we are doing better without them...a TEAM is not made up of stars, but guys who play as a unit!

Posted by   on (April 20, 2012, 13:04 GMT)

The Ausies can fight, yes . . . and they do, but so does the Proteas, the English, the Kiwis, the Pakistanis, the Bangladeshis,the West Indies and even India, now and then. The Proteas was just about knocked out at Newlands against the Ausies, they got up, bowled the whole lot out for 47 and then knocked the 230 odd runs needed for victory off for the loss of just 2 wickets. Guess who scored a ton with Hashim Amla? Yes, the captain everyone criticizes, i.e. G. Smith. If this is not fighting back, I don't know what is. Fighting back is not unique to the Ausies, at all, please . . . M. Clarke is a good player and captain, but what exactly makes him better than Strauss, Taylor, Smith, Misbah-ul-Haq, Jaewardene and Sammy? What? Please tell me! We will see how good M. Clarke really is when the Ausies play England, India in India and South Africa. We shall see if he is so good when the pressure on him and his side is, at least, doubled. We shall see . . .

Posted by CarlH on (April 20, 2012, 12:57 GMT)

anyone who know anthing about cricket would say Sammy is no slugger!!...all coaches team players to hit the ball straight/in the "V"...Sammy is one of the best at hitting the ball straight, and in the "V"....let the haters hate!

Posted by YorkshirePudding on (April 20, 2012, 12:56 GMT)

It was nicely set for a final session, with the windies needing 170'ish off 30 odd overs. Such is test cricket especially at this time of year in the Windies, I seem to remember a couple of games last year against india been affected in the same manner....As for the Anti-english/anti-aussie rehtoric, we'll get to see where both teams are an a little over a 13 months, not forgetting the ODI series that aus have here in in the UK in June.

Posted by zenboomerang on (April 20, 2012, 12:47 GMT)

@JG2704... Sorry... Meant "Oz going for the draw"... lol... Obvious mix up - getting dinner ready & talking too much...

Posted by AidanFX on (April 20, 2012, 12:40 GMT)

Can someone remind me of the series score of Pakistan vs England? or Australia vs India

Posted by WindiesWillow on (April 20, 2012, 11:20 GMT)

This match showed up both sides. Both teams had good bowling performances. Both teams had poor batting performances. Both teams sufferred from the lack of opening partnerships which might have Australia dropping Cowan with West Indies probably dropping Barath. Eithier this or they will be dropped if they do not perform in the next Test in Dominica. Good to see bowling attacks performing in pairs on both sides especially the Edwards / Roach pairing. We haven't seen this since the Ambrose / Walsh era. These two guys look in sync and the comradery is definitely there. Probably we'll get to see Rampaul team up with them.

Posted by zenboomerang on (April 20, 2012, 11:09 GMT)

@JG2704... Sorry... Meant "going for the draw"... lol... Obvious mix up - finishing off the BBQ & making sure that there were a couple of home-brews chilling... lol...

Posted by zenboomerang on (April 20, 2012, 10:43 GMT)

@JG2704... Re: Clarke... Agree... Why would Oz go for the slog in the 1st over after lunch if they were just going to go for the win?... Obviously a captains call to his players to make this an interesting match rather than watch 2 batsmen shoulder arms... Watching the Oz v NZ RL Test with a sick granddaughter atm & loving it - just wish cricket could get to these levels... Shows what a combined Oz/NZ comp makes...

Posted by jonesytoo on (April 20, 2012, 9:23 GMT)

@fr0nt-foot_lunge, spot on mate. Now all England have to do is draw a home series against New Zealand and lose next year's Ashes by three innings defeats and they can finally match the mighty Aussies.

Posted by   on (April 20, 2012, 9:16 GMT)

The only encouraging sign for the Windies is the will to compete, despite being outplayed in this rain-effected match. Sammy might've made a promising cameo, but he wouldn't of had the test-match temperament to bat the innings, but his fearless striking ability can be a plus and a minus. The fact he promoted himself to number three, says our batting lacks depth, discipline and self-belief. There's no doubt that the absence of Gayle, Sarwan and Nash has left a big hole in our batting line-up and as much as i like the idea of blooding in youngsters, it's pretty clear that they're not ready for teams that are as fiercely competitive like the Australians. Braithwaite and Powell are the future, Barath will get better once his career is not stuttured by injuries and Darren Bravo will be one of the top batsmen in world cricket, once he adds discipline to his natural ability. The bowling has been called mediocre, but they've held their own against Pakistan, India and now Australia.

Posted by   on (April 20, 2012, 8:47 GMT)

A West Indian team that missing Gayle,Sarwan,Pollard,Bravo and even Promising Sunil Naraine can give Australia a real fight They should be credited.Hope West indian win the last test and levell the series

Posted by Drew12 on (April 20, 2012, 8:36 GMT)

@fr0nt-foot_lunge I wish I had thought of that! Now we just need a GuptaAnkur.

Posted by JG2704 on (April 20, 2012, 8:35 GMT)

@rahulcricket007 on (April 20 2012, 02:00 AM GMT) maybe not there yet but as an Englishman who wants WI to win I would have favoured Aus to win had the test done the duration.Again re "AUS SAVED THEMSELVES BY RAIN" - How are Aus responsible for the rain exactly and as I said previously if Clarke was just trying to save the game why would he declare at all and bat as long as possible to ensure the draw.Trouble is there are no guarantees with weather. What if he had declared on a 170 lead and there was no more rain and WI had best part of the day to score those runs without any RR pressure?

Posted by JG2704 on (April 20, 2012, 8:28 GMT)

@Marcio on (April 20 2012, 00:09 AM GMT) agree re Clarke. This is obviously a guy who wanted to win the series by as big a margin as possible. If Graham Smith had been so proactive in his captaincy vs NZ SA would be undisputed no 1 in the test rankings.@Ramachandran Narayan PS - If Clarke wanted to be safety first and wanted just to preserve the team's lead he'd just have batted on as long as possible and not declared at all.

Posted by JG2704 on (April 20, 2012, 8:23 GMT)

@hhillbumper on (April 19 2012, 21:53 PM GMT) "They should not have won the last one" - They did win the last one and ok it was tight in the end but give the Aus team captaincy some credit. If we (England) declared behind in a game where we looked like heading for an inevitable draw and forced a win you'd be creaming the win.

Posted by JG2704 on (April 20, 2012, 8:19 GMT)

@Ramachandran Narayan on (April 20 2012, 06:43 AM GMT) What a negative anti Clarke post. I'm not an Aussie so I'm not being biased when I say his declaration in the 1st test was inspired and brilliantly timed and made an inevitable draw into a win. Yes , I thought Sammy let the game drift further than he should in the end and did not exert enough pressure by bringing the fielders in sooner but there's the difference between ambition and backing your players and the opposite. And re the 2nd test I believe he set 211 from about 61 overs and had WI 51-2 when rain stopped play. I'd say 211 from 61 overs is a very generous declaration and is the opposite of the play safe captaincy you criticise him of. I don't know about RPs captaincy but if the anti from this post is anything to go by I'm not sure I'd take your word for it

Posted by mukesh_LOVE.cricket on (April 20, 2012, 8:16 GMT)

People who think sammy was going to take WI home is delusional , he is a slogger and would have got out scoring 40 something , i even read some comments about clarke being 'LUCKY' !! come on guys , give credit where its due , clarke is one of the finest captains in world cricket today , iam an indian , but i dont have any problem saying it... his team plays hard , fair , aggressive cricket and when losing dont offer pathetic excuse , respect to clarke and his team

Posted by MrBrightside92 on (April 20, 2012, 8:14 GMT)

'All these English comments'...it's only FFL with his broken record syndrome...Clarke must get credit but if he's so keen for a win they really need to bat quicker..I'm interested in these teams, especially Australia injury prone fast bowlers (10 Ashes tests on the bounce next year...it'll be a different line up each game) and the fact they still rely almost exclusively on Hussey...still strange on picking two average 'frontline' spinners when you have good fast bowlers..reminded me of picking Botha and Harris who failed to get through a pretty average Pakistan batting line up in UAE..and Swann/Monty haven't won a game when playing together for Eng (though we did pick Monty as a batsman at Cardiff...)..Australia, sort your batting line up!!!

Posted by   on (April 20, 2012, 8:11 GMT)

@Ramachandran

Being brave and being foolish is totally different. So you think clarke should declared when they are about 160 odd runs and front and then leave Windies with about 70 overs to get it?

Seriously mate, they Aussie have nothing to lose here. They are already 1-0 up, perhaps WI should done something more to increase their chance of winning? like bat quicker etc etc?

The way i see it, it was a fair enough declaration from clarke. Sammy replied well too by asking the team to bat aggresively. All in all, good test, despite the weather.

Posted by Aussasinator on (April 20, 2012, 8:11 GMT)

This Test was good for Roach. But one notable feature stands out with regularity in this series. Shane Watson is actually competing with Darren Sammy for the better all rounder's tag. There was a time when he was competing with Andrew Flintoff for the same and even when Watson took 5 wickets against Flintoff's 2, it was always Flintoff who looked the greater all rounder. It's all a question of impact when it comes to judging allrounders. Here Darren Sammy has had a huge impact with his bat, especially and has rattled the Aussie bowlers including Hilfenhaus and Watson. Clearly Watson has entered the twilight of his career with his 30s and 40s and should no longer be batting at the top of the line up anymore. In this series it's been Sammy all the way. Hats off to the lion hearted skipper.

Posted by No_1_again on (April 20, 2012, 8:10 GMT)

@Front-Foot-Lunge; Yes we care only when No 1 & 2 ranked teams get whitewashed.

Posted by   on (April 20, 2012, 8:00 GMT)

To those saying that this is a mediocre test match and series because the WI are showing a fighting spirit and showing flashes of good cricket against the aussies are quite mistaken and maybe even foolish. The WI has given teams problems in the caribbean for the last year even if they have lost. teams including pakistan and India. They even gave India some trouble in India which is tough... as the English team found out.

Posted by mukesh_LOVE.cricket on (April 20, 2012, 8:00 GMT)

All credit to clarke , test match needs such brave captains who is not afraid to take risks , i still remember dhoni agreeing for a tame draw against WI when india could have won the match , and frankly i dont understand what many here are saying that 'RAIN SAVED AUSSIES', they could have batted slowly with hussey and wade and drew the match , but clarke showed real intent and gave WI a very good chance(until rain spoiled it) , remember aus is 1-0 up , they can do without such risks

Posted by Snick_To_Backward_Point on (April 20, 2012, 7:27 GMT)

Aussies have made the best of their limited resources and Clarke has engendered a fun spirit within his squad but let's not get carried away here. They're playing a young side who are in transition themselves so hardly the sternest of tests. Aside from Clarke - and the occasional mercurial performances by the usual suspects - Watson, Hussey, there's not a lot for the Aussies to feel good about. It is clear their bowling unit is very ordinary. Pattinson seems to have issues with fitness. Lyon was at last among the wickets but only on a pitch that was turning sideways - frankly an average club spinner would have had some success on that track. As for the batting - the top 3 are woeful. They lend an air of instability to the Aussie side that Eng and SA will be licking their lips to exploit. As an Eng fan am I worried the urn is danger next time around? Ummmm....Nah.

Posted by Front-Foot_lunge on (April 20, 2012, 7:08 GMT)

Hilfenhaus has been the most consistent text bowler for the last 6-12 months. He's taken 35 wickets at a staggering average of 17 and continues to do the business, against all comers. I have genuine fear for his performance in the next ashes with the duke, the same ball he's developed this devastating out-swinger with in the W.I.

This aussie team has the fundamentals of being a vey good side. It all started with the series draw to SA, followed by the away wins to Sri Lanka which my sorry England couldn't do.

Posted by   on (April 20, 2012, 7:06 GMT)

@Front-Foot-Lunge: Only you know the answer to your question because...your United XI teams spent it's time at the middle of the rankings for DECADES!!! ROFLMAO

Posted by Rooboy on (April 20, 2012, 6:58 GMT)

Disappointing ... could have been a cracking last day's cricket without the rain. Seems most here either think Aus was clear favourite, or WI were, but surely the game was beautifully balanced at 50-50 apiece? @rahulcricket007 - actually, Clarke's declaration would be considered bold by most fair minded people, especially with a bowler down, but your suggestion that he declare 170 ahead would not have been bold. That would be idiotic. And you're right, Aus are not that good ... fortunately you don't have to be good to whitewash india. A half decent side would beat india 6-0 in a 4 test series. Also seems to be a lot of english fans with a keen interest in such mediocre teams ... I wonder whether they really believe that the false bravado of their comments is fooling anyone? They do provide entertainment value at least

Posted by   on (April 20, 2012, 6:43 GMT)

Everyone is hailing Pups Captaincy. What is so great about it. He declared in the first test and won. It was sheer luck. Aussies nearly lost and I would blame Sammy and co for not exerting enough pressure. In this test the declaration came too late. Pup made sure that Aussies would not lose when he declared. Compared with the run rate of both the teams in this Test the asking rate of 3.52 was not attainable. None hailed Graeme Smith the SA Captain when he set an attainable score by Aussies and lost the match. Aussies may be a well-knit team but when it comes to challenge their Captains are weak-kneed. I can quote a number of instances of Ricky Ponting's safe declarations. Aussies are not good Sportsmen for that none can beat the WI. More Power to Sammy and Company. The WICB should pick up quality players and bring back the Glory of past days. WI you can do it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!All the best to you in the next Test.............

Posted by Front-Foot-Lunge on (April 20, 2012, 6:35 GMT)

Two middle-ranked teams play out an average series. Does anyone really care what happens in the middle-rankings of the cricketing world?

Posted by   on (April 20, 2012, 6:15 GMT)

Come on Windies ! Lets beat Australia in the next game; then destroy England and eat -up New Zealand afterwards. Lets kick some serious butt ! --ya hear me

Posted by Tendulkars_Tennis_Elbow on (April 20, 2012, 6:11 GMT)

hats off to both captains. both going for the win, in stark contrast to what dhoni did in the third Test last year in WI. dhoni bhai - hope you regain that gambling mojo soon.

Posted by jmcilhinney on (April 20, 2012, 5:43 GMT)

I think that some WI fans are getting a bit carried away. There are many good signs for WI and they were in with a chance here but to say that Australia was saved by rain is grossly over-stating the situation. WI managed 257 from 104.4 overs in the first innings here and 148 from 66.4 overs in the second innings of the last game. Realistically, what were their chances of scoring another 162 from 50 overs with 8 wickets in hand? Well under 50% I'd say.

Posted by gottalovetheraindance on (April 20, 2012, 5:21 GMT)

@ deano_411 Remember that at 1 point in the first innings West Indies were 230 for 4 wickets & The Aussie pace bowlers were taking stick before the last 6 wickets fell to spin bowling for 27 runs . Chasing 214 was quite feasible as the run rate required was below 4 an over

Posted by Captain_Oblivious on (April 20, 2012, 5:17 GMT)

ignoring the usual idiotic negative commenters here who have very short memories of their own teams' limitations, this is an unexpectedly good series. thanks to clarke's inventive captaincy and sammy's never-say-die attitude, this is compelling cricket. sammy doesn't seem to get much respect from typical online fanboys, but he has that rare quality of being a great leader who gets the best out of his men. west indies are going places under him and, to a lesser extent, otis gibson. good news for cricket with no true No.1 team at the moment.

Posted by gottalovetheraindance on (April 20, 2012, 5:05 GMT)

I really wanted the rain & darkness to stay away from Queens park Oval today. I was even hoping that some of the light & sunshine we had here in Kingston could go over there so I could give the fan a break lol. How ironic that WICB didnt schedule a test @ Sabina because of our 'alleged weather issues' and yet already almost 2 whole days of cricket have been lost to rain & bad light in Barbados & Trinidad with the only remaining test to be held in the 2nd wettest capital city in the Caribbean Roseau Dominica. We can almost kiss all hope of leveling the series goodbye. The only city where test cricket has been played in the Caribbean that MAYBE can be said to be dryer than Kingston Jamaica is St John's Antigua. In fact before their fall out with the Guyana Cricket board the WICB scheduled the 3rd test to be played in Georgetown which is the wettest city in the Caribbean. The Administration of the WICB needs to go learn some grade 5 / 6 social studies

Posted by   on (April 20, 2012, 5:01 GMT)

well played by both teams, but i would like to give the credit to WI. Roach was outstanding in a slow pitch but bad luck for Fidel, too many chance were sleep otherwise match could turn a favor to WI, hope to see some real hostile bowling in 3'rd test like good old days.

Posted by aarifboy on (April 20, 2012, 4:07 GMT)

everytime ponting gets a start rain comes and ruins remaining days play.u need some luck to get runs.

Posted by deano_411 on (April 20, 2012, 4:04 GMT)

Aussies saved by rain.. Really, @ Sheila_4 WI could only manage a paltry 257 in the first innings so unlikley they would have cruised to 215 in the second. @ Front Foot Lunge, that poor batting led Aus to beat Sri Lanka, Draw with SA and NZ and beat India and now we are beating WI, so not doing too bad for such inconsistent batting.. So by your calculations most teams in the world have mediocre bowling lineups do they??

Posted by gottalovetheraindance on (April 20, 2012, 3:58 GMT)

It shows what some people know about cricket when they can call West Indies bowling in this test mediocre. The Rolls Royce of fast bowling himself commended Roach & Fidel to a lesser extent for their efforts. its no easy feat for a fast bowler to take ten wickets bearing in mind the inclement weather and reviews going against you & catches being put down on a pitch more suited to spin bowling at that. If ppl can shower praises on Philander for taking wickets on Juicy pitches against Sri Lanka & New Zealand ' which lets face it arnt very strong opposition batting wise' then surely Roach deserves some credit for his efforts.

Posted by Lamsalsandesh on (April 20, 2012, 3:25 GMT)

IT seems to be competitive match. I would like to recommend top order must be changed as there was no steady runs from them. Lets hope for 3rd match the top orders will perform for the W.Indies. The only thing that looked good was middle order and bowling side for the tea. Please put more all rounders to ream like RUSSEL and Samules. Denorine is good .

Best of luck for 3rd test W.indies. Hope to draw the series 1-1.

Posted by eyballfallenout on (April 20, 2012, 2:59 GMT)

Whats more important about this game is that both teams went hard for the win, its unfortunate about the weather but hats off to both captains and well played both teams.

Posted by Sinhaya on (April 20, 2012, 2:46 GMT)

Aussies saved by the rain! Come on Windies, go all out to win the 3rd test! You can do it!

Posted by Sinhaya on (April 20, 2012, 2:45 GMT)

@Mel_Vin, what rubbish! Windies were well on track to win. Windies are really emerging back after their forgetful times. No one can deny that. Rain prevented Windies beating the Aussies last night. Windies showed what they can do in the ODIs and T20s against Aussies!

Posted by BravoBravo on (April 20, 2012, 2:32 GMT)

Well I have to give it to Michael Clarke and Co to making such a daring decision, no matter what people comment, but AUS always ooze confidence in their game, that is why they are the champions of the game not just chumps. Clarke is really a winner like Ponting. And due credit to WI who took the challenge and played with the zeal to win. WI could have won this match, but weather had the final say, and they were denied of the win. I love these two teams, they always play the game in the very true spirit of the game, not just for piling up runs for individual sake. The record holders of other whitewashed team must take cue from these two teams (WI and AUS). Good luck to both teams.

Posted by   on (April 20, 2012, 2:01 GMT)

Windies can't seem to finish off tailenders for a second test in a row, then Calypso Collapso. Although we were in with a chance before the rains. Sammy is learning that sometimes he has to think out of the box. Hope we can overcome these challenges and beat Australia because they are definitly beatable.

Posted by rahulcricket007 on (April 20, 2012, 2:00 GMT)

THIS SERIES HAS SHOWED THAT AUS ARE NOT THAT GOOD SIDE AS AUS EXPERTS ARE CLAMING WHEN THEY WHITEWASH INDIA . WITH CHANDERPAUL , DEONARINE TO COME & SAMMY BATTTING IN ODI MODE MATCH COULD HAVE GONE IN WI WAY . AUS SAVED THEMSELVES BY RAIN .EVEN IN FIRST TEST THEY WERE LUCKY THAT NARINE WASN'T PLAYING .ALSO I DON'T THINK CLARKE 'S DECLARATION WAS BOLD . IT WAS CLEAR FROM THE START OF DAY THAT RAIN WILL DEFINITELY COME . HE DECLARES ONLY WHEN THE CLOUDS COME OVER THE GROUND & WI BATSMEN GET ONLY 11 OVERS . I WOULD HAVE LOVE TO SEE IF HE DECLARES IN THE FIRST SESSION AFTER GETTING A LEAD OF 170 .

Posted by   on (April 20, 2012, 1:51 GMT)

Lets be fair guys, the rain left the results in doubts. But it was clear Sammy is an ODI player. He is not suited for the tests as captain or player. He is a slugger like Pollard. So give him a team for the ODI's and the 20/twenty. As we are all aware Sarwan is the stand in captain for the county club he is playing for in England. He was selected as captain at one time but it was handed to Gayle due to injury. He did not get a chance to perform in that position so here is the opportunity. Here is my take for an ODI and 20/twenty team. Sammy cap't, Brathwaitte, Ka Edwards, Simmons, Barath, Powell, Baugh, Benn, Shillingford, Roach, Rampaul, Edwards, and if available Gayle, Pollard, Sunil Narine, Dwayne Bravo and Samuels. The test team for England Sarwan Cap't, and must comprise of Ramdin, Roach, Edwards, Rampaul, Bishoo, Chanderpaul, Gayle, Bravo, Bravo, Shillingford, Deonarine, Bishoo and any two new young prospects.

Posted by   on (April 20, 2012, 1:45 GMT)

Yep, definitely very lucky they declared when they did and only had 160 runs left to defend.

Very lucky indeed that they were forced to declare when they did.

Very lucky they didn't go through the Windies whose best batsmen were already at the crease or back in the shed.

@RednWhiteArmy, you still having nightmares about Pakistan?

Posted by VivGilchrist on (April 20, 2012, 1:41 GMT)

All these negative comments from English folk would almost make you think that it is the Aussies that have lost 4 of their last 5 Tests...

Posted by   on (April 20, 2012, 1:35 GMT)

rampaul is a very attacking bowler and stastically one of the best new ball bowlers in the world , roach did very well in dis series , so credit must go to him , but i believe dat edwards should of been dropped and roach and rampaul bowling in tandem and dis match would of finished before the rain came

Posted by jmcilhinney on (April 20, 2012, 1:04 GMT)

Given WI's propensity to collapse, Australia would still have been favourites when the players went off. If Sammy had stuck around for a while things could have got interesting but I have my doubts that WI could have scored at the required rate and kept their wickets intact. It was certainly a possibility though. There will be plenty of people praising Clarke for an aggressive declaration but, while they may not be the same people, there would certainly be plenty criticising him too if they'd lost. Not that they necessarily would have put on too many more with those last two wickets. I'm guessing that Pattinson was not going to bat anyway.

Posted by Harry_Kool on (April 20, 2012, 1:00 GMT)

@Front-Foot-Lunge. Was this the same mediocre bowling that allowed the West Indies to beat your mob in the series when they last youred there? oh well.

Posted by   on (April 20, 2012, 0:53 GMT)

Can anyone tell us why australia plays the windies in the wet season?

Posted by Hodra99 on (April 20, 2012, 0:25 GMT)

@Front-Foot-Lunge....remember 2009??? 51 all out?? mediocre WI bowling...show them some respect

Posted by   on (April 20, 2012, 0:18 GMT)

Just as in the one day and T20 series these teams seem to be following each other.Today West Indies found themselves in a similar situation as Australia in the first test , batting on the final day needing around 200 runs within 60 overs.The WI bowlers got their team back in the game forcing a declaration on 160 with AUS effectively 9 wickets down since they had an injured player. If rain had not spoiled proceedings who knows what would have happened.Michael Clarke , who must be recognized for ensuring these test matches have been as entertaining if not more so than the shorter format games , with his aggressive captaincy and Darren Sammy with his never say die attitude are ensuring riveting cricket.The rain today was a true villain. This last test should be amazing I only wish it was 1 each with the series being decided by that match

Posted by Marcio on (April 20, 2012, 0:09 GMT)

Good on the captains for having a go, especially Clarke, who had much more to lose. I don't know too many captains, one up in a 3 match series, who would have risked losing to go for a win, especially with one bowler out injured. Having said that, I think Sammy's slogging at the end created the illusion that the WI were in a with a good chance to win (as opposed to the reality that it was a very long shot). You can't win test matches with 40 overs of slogging, and sooner rather than later those edges/slogs will get batsmen out and pressure would build. Also, as the ball got older scoring would have been very difficult. Still, have to give the WI credit for trying, even though that had little to lose.

Posted by   on (April 20, 2012, 0:05 GMT)

The West Indies are in dire need of a different pair of openers. Why not try Dwayne Smith, and Devon Smith? As well, we need a keeper who can make 30 runs consistently. Also, while Kieron Powell shows some potential, he would be much better off batting at 7, or 8, and promote Sammy to the #3 spot. Bring in Rampaul for Edwards. Are you paying attention WICB, and Mr. Gibson? Be proactive for a change; please. Try something new, instead of the same old, same old, yet keep expecting a different result. If you guys are afraid to lead, then, get out of the way, PLEASE! PLEASE? PLEASE?

Posted by sheila_4 on (April 19, 2012, 22:48 GMT)

WI denied levelling the series by inclement weather. Aus got very lucky indeed WI were eating into that paltry target with ease before the rain came.

Posted by RednWhiteArmy on (April 19, 2012, 22:16 GMT)

Aussies saved by rain against the west indies...HA!

Posted by hhillbumper on (April 19, 2012, 21:53 GMT)

I have a feeling that Windies would have got the runs given the lack of cutting edge from the Aussies. Hope the Windies win the next one as they should not have lost the last one. The Aussie batting has not been much use so far and that top 3 is so bad even Hughes would be an improvement

Posted by funkyandy on (April 19, 2012, 21:07 GMT)

As a Windies fan, I was delighted with Kemar's performance. But I'd give man of the match to Micheal Clarke for the declaration. Top man - tried to make a game of it. Following on from declaring behind in Barbados, Aus have the makings of an attacking captain, which can only be good for the game. Nuff respect Clarkie!

Posted by mukesh_LOVE.cricket on (April 19, 2012, 20:58 GMT)

i would say if not for all those stupid delays with power problems and then rain , Australia would have gone 2-0 up

Posted by BigGeorgeMehemood on (April 19, 2012, 20:42 GMT)

As me say, dey cannot win anything without Ramo (Rampaul). Too bad fuh dem. Dey mess up Ramo this match, so tooo baad!

Posted by Ra_Thore on (April 19, 2012, 20:22 GMT)

WI's fate: Either Whitewash or Rainwash!

Posted by   on (April 19, 2012, 20:03 GMT)

Congratulations to Michael Clarke for declaring and giving the W.I the chance to have a fair crack at winning. Clarkey could have played safe and played for the draw which would guarantee the Frank Worrell retained but he is an ambassador of the game and played for the good of it offering a potentinal outcome. I salute you Michael. NSW continues to offer the game Positive captains. Proud to be an Aussie and NSWelshman.

Posted by Front-Foot-Lunge on (April 19, 2012, 17:15 GMT)

Australia remain consistent in their batting. Consistently failing to mediocre bowling. Oh well!

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Andrew McGlashanClose
Andrew McGlashan Assistant Editor Andrew arrived at ESPNcricinfo via Manchester and Cape Town, after finding the assistant editor at a weak moment as he watched England's batting collapse in the Newlands Test. Andrew began his cricket writing as a freelance covering Lancashire during 2004 when they were relegated in the County Championship. In fact, they were top of the table when he began reporting on them but things went dramatically downhill. He likes to let people know that he is a supporter of county cricket, a fact his colleagues will testify to and bemoan in equal quantities.
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