Windies toil without success
NORTH SOUND, Antigua – West Indies endured a fruitless toil before lunch, as New Zealand’s openers strongly defied them in the first Digicel Test today here.
At the interval, New Zealand, choosing to bat, reached 71 without loss in their first innings on a hard, true Vivian Richards Cricket Ground pitch on the opening day, with left-hander Daniel Flynn, not out on 34, and Martin Guptill, not out on 34.
Before a modest crowd, West Indies had a handful of lbw appeals turned down, including an unsuccessful review, when Guptill was on 33, and TV replays showed the ball took an inside edge.
The home team bowlers were probably guilty of bowling too short, as Flynn and Guptill came alive following an early period of consolidation.
West Indies captain Darren Sammy conceded a couple of boundaries in his first over, allowing Flynn to get into stride with a drive through mid-off and a pull through mid-wicket.
Kemar Roach, returning to the West Indies line-up after leaving the tour of England early with injury, also allowed Guptill the luxury of a pair of boundaries in the first over of his second spell, when the lanky opener slapped him through extra cover and drove him straight.
Sunil Narine, whose off-spin bamboozled the Black Caps during the preceding Digicel Twenty20 and One-day Internationals, came under a bit of early pressure, when Guptill swung him over long-on for a six.
West Indies are seeking their first Test series victory over New Zealand for 16 years.
NEW ZEALAND 1st Innings
D. Flynn not out 34
M. Guptill not out 34
Extras (lb1, nb2) 3
TOTAL (without loss) 71
B. McCullum, *R. Taylor, K. Williamson, D. Brownlie, D. Vettori, +K. van Wyk, D. Bracewell, N. Wagner, C. Martin to bat
Bowling: Rampaul 6-1-12-0; Roach 8-2-24-0 (nb2); *Sammy 10-4-25-0; Narine 5-3-9-0
WEST INDIES: C. Gayle, K. Powell, A. Fudadin, M. Samuels, S. Chanderpaul, N. Deonarine, +D. Ramdin, *D. Sammy, K. Roach, S. Narine, R. Rampaul
Toss: New Zealand
Umpires: R. Kettleborough, P. Reiffel
TV umpire: M. Erasmus
Match referee: R. Madugalle
Reserve umpire: J. Wilson