WI strike early but NZ fight back
KINGSTON, Jamaica – Kemar Roach and Tino Best gave West Indies a bright start, but Martin Guptill and Ross Taylor led a recovery for New Zealand before lunch in the second Digicel Test on Thursday.
Roach and Best snared early wickets to rock the New Zealanders, but Taylor, not out on 36, and Guptill, not out on 32, resisted for the remainder of the session, as the visitors reached 74 for two in their first innings at the interval, after they were sent in to bat on the opening day.
Gaining true bounce, if not much movement from the hard, true Sabina Park pitch, compatriots Roach and Best had New Zealand wobbling on 11 for two in the first half-hour.
Roach made the breakthrough, when he had B.J. Watling caught at first slip for two, playing defensively forward to a pitched-up delivery, although TV replays seemed to suggest that he may have delivered a front-foot no-ball.
Best followed up in the next over, when a well-pitched delivery that moved away squared Brendon McCullum up and he was caught behind for a fourth-ball duck from a thin edge.
The two West Indies fast bowlers were tamed however, when Taylor came to the crease and joined Guptill to so far add 63 for the third wicket.
Best came close to removing Taylor early in his innings, when the New Zealand captain fended a snorter in no man’s land between gully fielder Marlon Samuels and backward point fielder Shivnarine Chanderpaul.
Approaching lunch, off-spinner Sunil Narine was the grieving bowler, when Guptill, on 27, glanced a delivery from the off-spinner down the leg-side just past wicketkeeper Denesh Ramdin.
Injuries forced both sides to make changes to their line-ups from the previous Test, which West Indies won by nine wickets last Monday at the Vivian Richards Cricket Ground in Antigua, taking a 1-0 lead in the two-Test series.
West Indies have brought Tino Best in to replace injured fellow fast bowler Ravi Rampaul, while New Zealand have included B.J. Watling, Tim Southee and Trent Boult for the injured pair of left-handed opener Daniel Flynn and left-arm spinner Daniel Vettori, along with out-of-favour Chris Martin.
NEW ZEALAND 1st Innings
B.J. Watling c Gayle b Roach 2
M. Guptill not out 32
B. McCullum c wkpr Ramdin b Best 0
*R. Taylor not out 36
Extras (b1, nb3) 4
TOTAL (2 wkts) 74
K. Williamson, D. Brownlie, +K. van Wyk, D. Bracewell, T. Southee, N. Wagner, T. Boult to bat
Fall of wickets: 1-10 (Watling), 2-11 (McCullum)
Bowling: Roach 6-1-26-1 (nb1); Best 7-0-16-1; Sammy 6-1-16-0 (nb2); Narine 7-2-13-0; Samuels 1-0-2-0
WEST INDIES: C. Gayle, K. Powell, A. Fudadin, M. Samuels, S. Chanderpaul, N. Deonarine, +D. Ramdin, *D. Sammy, S. Narine, K. Roach, T. Best
Toss: West Indies
Umpires: M. Erasmus (South Africa), P. Reiffel (Australia)
TV umpire: R. Kettleborough (England)
Match referee: R. Madugalle (Sri Lanka)
Reserve umpire: G. Brathwaite (West Indies/Barbados)