West Indies on brink of victory
PORT-OF-SPAIN, Trinidad (AP):
The West Indies bowlers produced a spirited performance to put a series-levelling victory in sight against New Zealand after four days of the second cricket Test yesterday.
The Black Caps, facing a first-innings deficit of 239, reached 257-8 in their second innings, leading by 18 with two wickets in hand.
Kemar Roach toiled manfully on a placid Queen's Park Oval pitch to claim 3-53 while fellow pacer Jerome Taylor took 2-46. Left-arm spinner Sulieman Benn grabbed 2-62 from a marathon 49 overs, and claimed a sensational return catch.
Kane Williamson top-scored with 52, while BJ Watling provided a defiant, unbeaten 36 in 41/2 hours at the crease.
Wicketkeeper Watling shared a resolute, undefeated ninth-wicket stand of 43 with Mark Craig, 29 not out. The pair helped New Zealand stretch the match into the fifth day and lifted slim hopes of the tourists' preserving their 1-0 lead in the series.
The West Indies grabbed wickets at regular intervals during an attritional day after the Black Caps resumed on 73-1.
The determined overnight partnership between Williamson and opener Tom Latham carried on for the first 45 minutes, taking New Zealand to 84 before the lanky Benn struck.
Latham gloved to silly point after a delivery from the left-armer reared off a good length. The left-hander scored 36 off 138 balls and his stand with Williamson was worth 75.
NZ STAND FIRM
The West Indies had to wait another hour before they broke New Zealand's resistance again as pacer Roach finally prised out Williamson, who spent 214 minutes at the crease. The right-hander hit five fours off 178 balls before nibbling outside the off stump and edging to wicketkeeper and skipper Denesh Ramdin.
Benn provided the highlight of the morning session just before the break, diving full length to his right to haul in a one-handed catch from Jimmy Neesham's crunching drive. Neesham departed for 7 at 121-4.
Ross Taylor and Watling added 32 in an hour either side of lunch before Gabriel made a crucial breakthrough. Taylor, who had defied for just over two hours in scoring 36 off 88 deliveries, edged a drivebehind.
Jerome Taylor was rewarded for his accurate swing bowling with the scalp of Hamish Rutherford on 13, lbw playing no stroke to an in-dipper.
New Zealand took tea at 181-6 and quickly slumped to 212-8 as Roach struck twice with the second new ball against aggressive tail-enders.
New Zealand 1st Innings 221
West Indies 1st innings 460
New Zealand 2nd innings
T. Latham c Brathwaite b Benn 36K. Williamson c wkp Ramdin b Roach 52R. Taylor c wkp Ramdin b Gabriel 36J. Neesham c & b Benn 7+B.J. Watling not out 38H. Rutherford lbw b Taylor 13I. Sodhi c wkp Ramdin b Roach 14T. Southee c Edwards b Roach 15M. Craig not out 29Extras (B9, LB2, W1, NB2) 14TOTAL (8 wkts, 127 overs) 257
Fall of wickets: 1-9, 2-84, 3-108, 4-121, 5-153, 6-176, 7-193, 8-212.
Bowling: Taylor 25-8-46-2 (nb1), Roach 21-6-53-3 (w1), Gabriel 19-3-56-1 (nb1), Benn 49-16-62-2, Gayle 13-3-29-0.
Position: New Zealand lead by 18 runs with two wickets remaining.
Umpires: Ian Gould, Rod Tucker
TV umpire: Richard Illingworth.