Bravo still going, but Deonarine falls
DUNEDIN, New Zealand – A hundred-run partnership between Darren Bravo and fellow left-hander Narsingh Deonarine brought respectability back to the West Indies batting before tea in the first Test against New Zealand on Friday here.
Bravo was undefeated on 146, but Deonarine, curbing his natural instincts, battled for 52 before he was dismissed in the last half-hour before the break, as the Windies reached 314 for five in their second innings at tea on the fourth day at University Oval, still trailing by 82.
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For just over three hours either side of lunch, Bravo and Deonarine defied the New Zealanders’ attack to add some stability to the batting, after the experienced duo of Marlon Samuels and Shivnarine Chanderpaul fell cheaply in the first hour.
Bravo brought up his fifth Test hundred before lunch and continued merrily after the interval with a couple of rasping, trademark cover drives off left-arm fast-medium bowler Neil Wagner a joy to behold.
With each passing delivery, Deonarine blossomed and he reached his 50 from 126 balls, when he drove Anderson through cover for just his fourth boundary – but he had two slices of good fortune before he reached the landmark.
He was on 39, when Tim Southee put down a low return chance from a checked drive, and in the bowler’s following over, he was 40, when New Zealand captain Brendon McCullum, at short cover, dropped a straightforward chance from a blistering drive.
Deonarine’s good fortune however, ran out four overs before the break, when Anderson produced an unplayable delivery that leapt from a good length and the left-hander was caught behind from a thin edge.
Before lunch, Bravo had survived a dropped catch to complete his fifth Test hundred, as West Indies reached 235 for four at the interval.
Bravo reached his milestone from 200 balls, when he swept leg-spinner Ish Sodhi to deep fine leg for his 15th boundary.
It was his first Test hundred in eight innings spread over five Tests, since his 127 against Bangladesh last November in Khulna.
He was fortunate on 82 however, when left-arm fast-medium bowler Neil Wagner failed to hold a sharp return chance from a leading edge.
Bravo and Deonarine dug in, after Samuels and Chanderpaul departed, leaving West Indies 185 for four.
Samuels made 23 before he gave a return catch to Southee in the second over of the day and Chanderpaul was trapped lbw to Wagner for one in the sixth over of the morning, television replays confirming the dismissal after he asked for a review.
Deonarine came to the crease and never looked ruffled, stroking the ball nicely and rotating the strike constantly to keep Bravo in the groove.
NEW ZEALAND 1st Innings 609
(R. Taylor 217 not out, B. McCullum 113; T. Best 3-148)
WEST INDIES 1st Innings 213
(S. Chanderpaul 76; T. Southee 4-52)
WEST INDIES 2nd Innings (following on)
(overnight 168 for two)
K. Edwards lbw b Sodhi 59
K. Powell c Southee b Boult 14
D.M. Bravo not out 146
M. Samuels c and b Southee 23
S. Chanderpaul lbw b Wagner 1
N. Deonarine c wkpr Watling b Anderson 52
D. Ramdin not out 4
Extras (b5, lb5, w5, nb1) 8
TOTAL (5 wkts) 314
Fall of wickets: 1-18 (Powell), 2-135 (Edwards), 3-178 (Samuels), 4-185 (Chanderpaul), 5-307 (Deonarine)
Bowling: Southee 20-2-66-1; Boult 24-7-56-1 (w1); Wagner 21-2-75-1 (nb1); Anderson 12-2-17-1; Sodhi 24-3-77-1; Redmond 4-1-14-0
Position: West Indies trail by 82 runs with five second innings wickets standing
Umpires: N. Llong (England), P. Reiffel (Australia)
TV umpire: I. Gould (England)
Match referee: R. Mahanama (Sri Lanka)
Reserve umpire: C. Gaffaney (New Zealand)