West Indies v SA, 2nd Test, St Kitts, 5th day June 22, 2010

Smith wants more life in Barbados

Cricinfo staff

Graeme Smith is hoping the pitch in Barbados offers more than the dull surface in St Kitts following a dozy draw in the second Test. South Africa declared after tea at 235 for 3 to end a match containing only three innings, including scores of 543 for 6 declared and 546.

"This was not an exciting surface on which to play Test cricket," Smith said. "We were all looking for a good, even battle between bat and ball. Hopefully, Barbados will have a little bit more in the pitch, and it will be more of a fair challenge for both sides."

The match drifted terminally on the fourth morning when West Indies added only 39 runs for the opening session. Smith was surprised the hosts didn't push on in an effort to level the series at 1-1.

"Our tactics [on the fourth day] were that West Indies had batted themselves into a position, and being 0-1 down, we felt they had an opportunity to make a play," he said. "They didn't make the play, and they were defensive, which played into our hands, so we had to bat out today, and we head to Barbados still up 1-0."

However, Chris Gayle said he was "very happy with the result". "Our batting has been struggling, and to get over 500 runs is a great achievement," he said. "We must commend the guys for the way they batted. Shiv [Chanderpaul] and [Brendan] Nash getting hundreds was always going to be good for us."

The main thing Gayle took out of the match was the side's better batting performance in the first innings, even including the period on the fourth morning. "I am satisfied because our plan was to bat out the day, and when you looked at the way they bowled at us it was always going to be difficult for us to score," he said. "So we just tried to bat as many overs as possible." The final Test begins at Kensington Oval on Saturday.

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  • Hildreth on June 25, 2010, 6:12 GMT

    West Indies can beat any team even without Taylor and Edwards. Just recently we won test matches against Sri Lanka, South Afica and beat England at home. We came very close to winning twice against Australia in '09. We are only going to beat those top ranked teams convincingly with more self-belief and stronger leadership. WI had South Africa reeling at 107 for 5 in 47 overs in Trinidad with attacking field placings and soon as two batsmen put up a little resistance Gayle became more and more defensive (as usual). Result: SA got 352 in 129 overs. Almost impossible to recover from that. Fans want WI to be cautious after that humiliating defeat but pointless if team does not learn from mistakes. I agree with selecting Richards for opening slot. Dowlin should return to team but not as opener. I thought Jason Holder would be drafted for 5th test after his impressive performance at under-19 World Cup. RUSSEL is an exciting prospect & should be selected for test duty asap. Also Tonge.

  • ronald on June 24, 2010, 20:45 GMT

    There's something going on between de tiga & Nash; let's hope 'Bigga' Chris Gayle is aware of that partnership that always come to fruition - let them be a the crease together. Chris should also try an opening partnership N. Deonarine; ND can be defensive, but can also 'beat de ball', as they would say on Leg 1 island. Also, combinations of Chris, ND, A. Barath & A. Fletcher will eventually result in a good opening partnership in the future. Never liked G. Smith ever since he had a 'run-in' with Dwayne Bravo & Andrew Symmonds. Gee, the pitch was fine when SA made their score! During tests, can the pitch have a bit of wear & tear?

  • Michael on June 24, 2010, 16:14 GMT

    Lets be honest WI does not have the bowlers necessary to bowl out a team like SA for a low score. Taylor is always injured and needs a year off, Edwards cant bowl long spells, Roach is fast but wayward, and not really fast in the true sense, Rampaul not ready. What we have really are medium pacers Bernard, Sammy, Pasqual are good but medium. Tonge and Russell are potential fast bowlers. We are riding skipper Gayle but he is only playing with what is given to him. We still need another opening bat and one batsman/keeper. Sorry Trinidad but Ramdin is not it. He must have something in his back pocket on one of the selectors why he keeps gettiing picked..not fair to other keepers in the WI. Surprised at the squad selection with Bernard and Baugh being left out. good luck to WI in the next match and skipper Gayle you are doing a good job!! big up!!

  • Len on June 24, 2010, 10:09 GMT

    WIndies should be given credit for saving the test match in St Kitts. The truth of the matter is that we have not got a side to bowl ANY opposition out and our batting has only ONE test class batsmen which is Chanderpaul. So it was good that we did not hear any typical rubbish from Gayle about winning the test match after Sth Africa scored their first innings total, instead their was good sober batting which had character and fight, traits not associated with the WIndies side for the last FIFTEEN YEARS. These are the traits what I want them to show in their test matches with the type of side that we do have.

  • diren on June 24, 2010, 6:34 GMT

    For all of you that think it was south africas fault that the match ended in a draw .....yourl need to wake up seriously!! Paul harris did what any bowler would have done in that situation on that road( not pitch) A decent pitch and we wouldnt be discussing this, we would be talking about SA being 2-0 up and a whitewash on the cards!

  • Dummy4 on June 23, 2010, 22:19 GMT

    @Ajay... Although you might argue that the Windies were slow, I would say, Paul Harris equally contributed to the pain watching the test match. I sometimes feel if he's the next "Ashley Giles", who does'nt mind bowling 50 overs just to test people's patience. But all said, I feel it was a real morale boosting performance by the West Indies. Although they played defensively, the South African bowling (atleast in this match) looked weak and defensive.

  • giovaughn on June 23, 2010, 20:15 GMT

    this game was completely boring & pointless . thank God 4 the world cup lol

    WICB need 2 do sumn about the pitch @ warner park . the bats men already have it easy as its a small ground n so they dont need much help from the pitch .

  • Dummy4 on June 23, 2010, 19:32 GMT

    Infact I have never seen Bravo play this defensively. I was surprised when even Benn and Rampaul could score at a faster rate than the top order. I feel the West indian top order played a selfish game just to get some match practice and left the enthusiastic west indian fans down!!

  • Dummy4 on June 23, 2010, 18:00 GMT

    Lets face it. The west indies cricket board is tired of having the crap kicked out of their players by everyone including bangeladesh, so they made a flatty. They have managed to save being white washed in all three forms of the game. Should keep their sponsors from jumping ship for a couple of weeks.

  • John on June 23, 2010, 16:13 GMT

    For those people who believe SA's bowling was the reason for the drawn match, think again. Bowling outside the leg stump does NOT make it impossible for the batsmen to score runs. And it should NEVER result in them taking 3 hours to score 50. Look at how Kevin Pietersen and Paul Collingwood managed to score at a decent rate when Warne tried this sort of negative bowling in Adelaide in 06/07. No matter how negative the bowling, good batsmen should be able to score at more than one run per over. Especially when they've breezed past the follow-on mark and are batting on a totally lifeless pitch. The curator is to blame here, not SA's bowling.

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