Kirk Edwards, Brathwaite give WI edge
BRIDGETOWN, Barbados – Half-centuries from new vice-captain Kirk Edwards and Kraigg Brathwaite gave West Indies the edge before tea in the first Digicel Test against Australia on Saturday.
Edwards made 61 and Brathwaite was unbeaten on 53, as West Indies reached 158 for two in their first innings at the break on the opening day at Kensington Oval.
The pair added 104 for the second wicket either side of tea with Edwards reaching his 50 from 97 balls, when he lofted a delivery from Warner to the long-off boundary for his eighth four, and Brathwaite landing at the mark from 163 balls, when clipped Warner through mid-wicket for two.
Both however, gained reprieves. Brathwaite, who was dropped on 10, was also fortunate on 44, when Ricky Ponting muffed a low chance at second slip off Shane Watson, and Edwards was on 56, when Shane Watson failed to hold onto a head high chance at gully off Peter Siddle.
With tea approaching, Edwards gifted his wicket, when he mistimed a pull at a long-hop and gave part-time leg-spinner David Warner a maiden Test scalp.
He occupied the crease for close to 2 ½ hours, striking 10 fours and one six from 107 balls, and guiding his younger compatriot.
Before lunch, a bright start for West Indies was spoiled, when opener Adrian Barath gifted his wicket, as the hosts reached 60 for one at the interval.
Barath fell after 1 ¼ hours, when he miscued an ill-advised hook at a short, rising ball from Ryan Harris and was caught at long leg for 22.
He and Brathwaite gave West Indies a solid start, putting on 38 for the first wicket after West Indies chose to bat on a hard, true pitch.
Brathwaite collected the first boundary of the day, when he glanced a delivery from Harris to the deep fine leg boundary in the third over.
But he was 10, when he played an uppish drive and Siddle dropped a return chance to his left.
Barath broke the war of attrition, when he sliced a drive at a delivery from Siddle to collect his first boundary before his departure came a few overs later.
Edwards joined Brathwaite and they started to turn the screws on the Aussies.
WEST INDIES 1st Innings
A. Barath c Siddle b Harris 22
K. Brathwaite not out 53
K. Edwards c and b Warner 61
D.M. Bravo not out 14
Extras (b2, lb2, w3, nb1) 8
TOTAL (2 wkts) 158
S. Chanderpaul, N. Deonarine, +C. Baugh Jr, *D. Sammy, K. Roach, F. Edwards, D. Bishoo to bat
Fall of wickets: 1-38 (Barath), 2-142 (F. Edwards)
Bowling: Harris 12-2-28-1; Hilfenhaus 13-4-27-0; Siddle 13-6-33-0 (nb1, w3); Lyon 8-2-24-0; *Clarke 2-0-4-0; Watson 6-2-18-0; Warner 5-0-23-1
AUSTRALIA: D. Warner, E. Cowan, S. Watson, R. Ponting, *M. Clarke, M. Hussey, +M. Wade, R. Harris, P. Siddle, B.Hilfenhaus, N. Lyon
Toss: West Indies
Umpires: I. Gould (England), T. Hill (New Zealand)
TV umpire: M. Erasmus (South Africa)
Match referee: J. Crowe (New Zealand)
Reserve umpire: G. Brathwaite (Barbados/West Indies)