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Day 1: Indian bowlers strike hard after batsmen fail

cricket Updated: Jun 29, 2011 10:23 IST

IANS
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Indian bowlers atoned for the dismal performance of the batsmen as they reduced the West Indies to 30 for three after an absorbing first day's play of the second cricket Test here on Tuesday.

Indian batsmen struggled to get the measure of a bouncy track at the Kensington Oval and were bowled out for 201 in the first innings after V.V.S.Laxman top scored with a fighting 85 and Suresh Raina made 53.

Their bowlers hit back in the last session taking the late wickets of Adrian Barath, Lendl Simmons and Darren Bravo to leave the hosts at 30-3 and ended the day with a handsome lead of 171 runs. In all 13 wickets fell on the first day and surprisingly nine of it came from the last session.

Put in on a lively track, Indian suffered two batting collapses as the home bowlers Devendra Bishoo, Ravi Rampaul and Fidel Edwards collected three wickets each.

Rampaul (3-38) wrecked the top-order claiming three wickets for four to leave India struggling at 44 for four at lunch.

Opening batsman Abhinav Mukund (1) departed in just the second over steering a catch to Marlon Samuels at gully while Rahul Dravid (5) edged a superb delivery off skipper Darren Sammy to wicketkeeper Carlton Baugh.

Rampaul marked his return, with two wickets from three balls. Opener Murali Vijay (11) edged to Baugh and Virat Kohli didn't trouble his scorers, offering a simple catch to Sammy at second slip. At lunch break, Rampaul's figures read 8-5-4-3.

Laxman and Raina then repaired the innings with their 117-run stand in the wicket-less second session. They reached their half-centuries patiently. Laxman hit 12 boundaries in his 146-ball knock while Raina struck seven in his 105-ball innings.

Raina departed shortly in the post tea session when he was again given a dubious decision, caught at short leg off leg-spinner Bishoo. TV replays suggested that the ball might have missed his bat completely. The dismissal triggered the second collapse as India slipped from 147 for four to 201 all out.

Edwards removed Mahendra Singh Dhoni (2) and Harbhajan Singh (5) in quick successions leaving Laxman to fight it out with the tailenders. The veteran finally fell 15 short of his well-deserved century as Barath took a simple catch at backward point off Bishoo.

Indian pacers Ishant Sharma, Praveen Kumar and Abhimanyu Mithun picked up a wicket each as the West Indies suffered a shaky start.

Barath (3) was the first to go after he guided a poor shot off Ishant to Kohli at gully in the fourth over and in the next over Kumar tempted Simmons (2) to edge to wicketkeeper Dhoni. Mithun then struck in the final over of the day prompting Bravo (9) to give a catch to Dhoni.