Second Test Match

West Indies v Pakistan

A phenomenal exhibition of fast bowling on the first day by Croft caused a Pakistan collapse and gave the West Indies an early advantage which they did not relinquish. Sarfraz (injured) and Javed were omitted from Pakistan's first Test team and replaced by two spinners, Intikhab and Qasim. The West Indies brought in Shillingford and Jumadeen for Foster and Holder.

Croft, in only his second Test, bowled with pace and accuracy throughout his two spells in the Pakistan first innings, becoming only the second West Indies fast bowler to take eight wickets in a Test innings. Ironically, the only other had been Holding whose injury created the vacancy in the team filled by Croft. Pakistan's problems began when Sadiq was forced to retire after being hit on the forearm by Croft before he had scored. Croft then dismissed Haroon, Mushtaq and Asif Iqbal cheaply before Majid and Raja came together for the best partnership of the innings - 82 for the fourth wicket. However, Majid and Imran were dismissed in quick succession in mid-afternoon and Croft's final spell proved decisive, five wickets for nine runs in 10.5 overs. Salim produced two excellent balls before the end of the day to remove Greenidge and Richards in the same over but, on the second day, Fredericks batted superbly in acting as the foundation on which the West Indies built a lead of 136. He gave one difficult chance off Intikhab when 56 but otherwise made no mistake in his eighth Test century and his first at the Queen's Park Oval. He batted six hours twenty minutes, sharing important stands with Kallicharran and Shillingford. Hard hitting by Garner and Croft late in the innings contributed more crucial runs for the West Indies at a time when Mushtaq's legspin threatened to limit the deficit for his team.

Pakistan hopes were lifted by a steady opening partnership of 123 in their second innings between Majid and Sadiq before the former was caught at slip off Jumadeen. The effort declined in the final session of the third day when four wickets fell for 79, including that of Sadiq whose 81 was his best innings of the tour. That the West Indies target was eventually as high as 205 was due, almost entirely, to the aggressive Raja and Imran who put on 76 for the seventh wicket. Raja's 84 in three hours represented the fourth time he had made top score in the series for his team.

Fredericks and Greenidge began so confidently for the West Indies that the first wicket put on 97 that a comfortable victory appeared certain on the final day. Instead, Imran and Salim bowled with such accuracy and determination that the struggle was intense. Imran claimed Greenidge, Richards and Shillingford in rapid succession and Kallicharran took more than half an hour to score his first run. Not until five minutes before lunch did Lloyd drive Salim to the cover-boundary for only the second four of the morning. So West Indies secured victory and the lead in the series.

© John Wisden & Co