Taufeeq puts Pakistan in control
Basseterre, St Kitts, CMC – Opener Taufeeq Umar made an unbeaten 97 as Pakistan took command of the Second Digicel Test against West Indies on Sunday, ending the third day with a lead of 251 and seven second innings wickets remaining.
The tourists, trailing 1-0 in the two-match rubber, will now fancy their chances of levelling the series and West Indies need a change in fortunes to save the match. Pakistan have an overall lead of 251 following their first inning lead of as the West Indies fell for 223 in the morning session.
Taufeeq’s patient innings, took 231 balls and included 10 fours. He had some luck as he survived two dropped catches and a missed stumping.
Earlier in the day a fine rearguard effort from tail-enders Kemar Roach and Ravi Rampaul, who put on 60 runs for the ninth wicket as the Windies fought hard for over an hour. Roach played for fine off-side shot in Test best score of 29 from 103 balls, while the left-handed Rampaul smashed two big sixes in 32 off 77 balls.
When Pakistan batted, Darren Bravo dropped an easy chance when Umar edged Roach to him at first slip and then another Umar edge off Roach flashed was missed by skipper Darren Sammy in the slips. Sammy then failed to hold on to a low edge from Mohammad Hafeez off Rampaul as Pakistan made it to 55 without loss at lunch.
The skipper made amends with the ball in the afternoon session as he dismissed Hafeez with a sharp in-swinger to get the belated breakthrough at 82-1. West Indies missed another chance to get rid of Umar when wicketkeeper Carlton Baugh missed a stumping off leg-spinner Devendra Bishoo.
Later on Bishoo struck when Azhar Ali attempted to cut a sharply turning leg-break and Sammy took a smart catch in the slips to remove the Pakistani batsman for 53. Asad Shafiq then fell to a superb catch by Baugh off a superb away swinger from a fired-up Roach as Pakistan, at 167-3, lost some momentum.
That was the last success for the home side however as Taufeeq continued to dig in. Late in the day he cracked a shot to mid-off where Lendl Simmons made a superb dive but failed to hold on.