West Indies up for challenge – batting coach
West Indies batting coach Monty Desai believes that the West Indies team has the pedigree to come out with a positive result heading into today’s final day of the first Test at the Sir Vivian Richards Ground in Antigua.
The home side face an uphill task if they are to win or even eke out a draw in the match as they need 341 runs with nine wickets in hand on today’s final day, this after Sri Lanka piled up a whopping 476 in their second innings.
The West Indies will resume on 34 for one, with Jamaican Nkrumah Bonner on 15 and captain Kraigg Brathwaite on eight. The home side lost Jamaican opener John Campbell for 11 to pacer Vishwa Fernando.
Meanwhile, Desai believes that the West Indies are still capable of pulling off another good batting display, similar to what they did in Bangladesh, where the regional side chased down 395 runs on the final day of that Test match to win by three wickets, thanks to a double hundred from Kyle Mayers.
“One of the things that is very important in Test is that it’s a five-day game. We have been in the field for a long time, but we take a lot of pride, and that is what we were meant for as a side, “said Desai.
The West Indies are facing this scenario after the Sri Lankans batted excellently on the fourth day to put themselves in the ascendancy.
Their good position was thanks largely to a magnificent century from debutant Pathum Nissanka, who made 103 and wicket-keeper Niroshan Dickwella, who scored 96.
The pair put on a whopping 196 runs for the sixth wicket, which was compiled over two sessions.
Sri Lanka added 104 runs in the morning session, and 76 thereafter until Tea, but quick wickets in the final session brought some respite for West Indies as Kemar Roach finished with three for 74 and Rahkeem Cornwall three for 137.
SRI LANKA 1st innings 169
WEST INDIES 1st Innings 271
SRI LANKA 2nd Innings
(overnight 255 for four)
L Thirimanne b Roach 76
*D Karunaratne c Campbell b Roach 3
O Fernando c wkp Da Silva b Mayers 91
D Chandimal c wkp Da Silva b Mayers 4
D de Silva b Joseph 50
P Nissanka c Roach b Cornwall 103
+N Dickwella b Roach 96
S Lakmal run out 8
D Chameera c Mayers b Cornwall 6
L Embuldeniya c Holder b Cornwall 10
V Fernando not out 0
Extras (b13, lb5, nb11) 29
TOTAL (all out, 149.5 overs) 476
Fall of wickets: 1-8 (Karunaratne), 2-170 (O Fernando), 3-178 (Chandimal), 4-189 (Thirimanne), 5-259 (Dhananjaya), 6-438 (Nissanka), 7-460 (Dickwella), 8-462 (Lakmal), 9-476 (Embuldeniya), 10-476 (Chameera)
Bowling: Roach 27-3-74-3 (nb6), Gabriel 18-2-67-0, Holder 22-4-40-0 (nb1), Joseph 21-2-83-1, Cornwall 42.5-4-137-3, Brathwaite 9-1-30-0, Mayers 9-1-24-2 (nb3), Blackwood 1-0-3-0.
WEST INDIES 2nd Innings (target: 375 runs)
K Brathwaite not out 8
J Campbell c wkp Dickwella b V Fernando 11
N Bonner not out 15
TOTAL (1 wkt, 20 overs) 34
Fall of wickets: 1-12 (Campbell)
Bowling: Lakmal 7-4-4-0, V Fernando 6-0-21-1, Embuldeniya 4-2-5-0, Chameera 2-1-4-0, Dhananjaya 1-1-0-0.
Position: West Indies require 341 runs for victory with nine wickets intact.
Toss: West Indies.
Umpires: G Brathwaite, J Wilson; TV – N Duguid