Lara and Collymore thwart Pakistan
Lara started in circumspect fashion, having arrived at the crease after Devon Smith's assured 25 had been ended by a worm-killer that knocked back off stump. Gayle had taken heavy toll of Rana Naved-ul-Hasan - whose right thumb was badly hurt by a delivery from Daren Powell - stroking some splendid drives and flicking the ball nonchalantly off his pads. There was also one magnificent six over long-on off Shabbir Ahmed before Abdul Razzaq got one to nip away a shade and take the edge.
As many as 59 had come from 11 overs before lunch, but the innings was becalmed after the interval, with Danish Kaneria proving especially miserly. But having taken his time to get his eye in, Lara opened up as only he can to send the fielders scattering and give Inzamam-ul-Haq plenty to ponder by teatime.
Having taken 68 balls to reach 33, Lara then sauntered along at a run-a-ball until he reached the 90s. The purple patch included two massive sixes over long-on off Kaneria, and when Naved, who had been flayed for 22 in two overs with the new ball, was brought back, Lara responded with two coruscating pulls interspersed by the most gorgeous cut for four.
At the other end, Sarwan overcame early jitters against Kaneria to give his former captain sterling support. Kaneria, who conceded just 18 from his first 11 overs, went for 32 from his next five as West Indies went from 100 to 200 in just 142 deliveries. The stage was set for an assault after tea, but when Sarwan, who had got to 50 with a tremendous square-drive off Shabbir, mistimed a hook, the momentum was irrevocably lost.
Chanderpaul pottered around initially, and with Lara also going into a shell of sorts as he neared three figures, Pakistan were able to gather breath and regroup. Lara, who scored as many as three-fourth of his runs on the leg side, finally reached his hundred with a delicate glance for four, and then opened up with some gorgeous strokes, none more exquisite than two off-drives off Kaneria.
Chanderpaul took imbibed some of the attacking intent, slamming a wayward Shahid Afridi for two fours through midwicket before Kaneria ensured that he wouldn't be around for fun and frolic on day three.
Earlier in the day, West Indies had been indebted to another seasoned campaigner. Corey Collymore, who reined in Pakistan during the final session yesterday, picked up three more to finish with stunning and richly deserved figures of 7 for 78.
Razzaq and Kamran Akmal were the last recognised pair at the crease, but any hopes that Pakistan had of posting a huge total were dealt a severe blow in the day's first over when Collymore trapped Razzaq in front without any addition to the overnight score. Akmal continued to pull and cut in positive fashion, stitching together 19 with Naved before Powell intervened with a quick delivery that smashed into Naved's hand.
Shabbir didn't bother the scorers, giving Collymore his sixth victim of the innings, and when Powell sneaked one in low to trap Kamran one short of his half-century, Naved strode bravely out to the middle. He couldn't make any impact, however, as Collymore mopped up the innings with a full delivery to Kaneria. It took just 10.3 overs to thwart Pakistani ambitions of a huge total, and thereafter Lara was to the fore as West Indies went in search of a total that would shut the door as far as both match and series are concerned.
How they were out
Abdul Razzaq lbw Collymore 19 (336 for 7)
Ball nipped back, struck in front
Shabbir Ahmed c Browne b Collymore 0 (360 for 8)
Good length ball, edge behind
Kamran Akmal lbw b Powell 49 (374 for 9)
Trapped in front by one that kept low
Danish Kaneria b Collymore 6 (374 all out)
Bowled by a full delivery
Gayle c Kamran Akmal b Abdul Razzaq 33 (48 for 1)
Swung away from round the wicket
Smith b Abdul Razzaq 25 (59 for 2)
Ball didn't rise more than a couple of inches after pitching.
Ramnaresh Sarwan c Danish Kaneria b Shabbir Ahmed 55 (205 for 3)
Set up by a short ball, which he hooked on the swivel to fine leg.
Shivnarine Chanderpaul c Kamran Akmal b Danish Kaneria 28 (275 for 4)
Undone by a googly that reared up at him. Thin edge to the keeper.
Dileep Premachandran is assistant editor of Cricinfo