x Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 26 July 2017

India play safe for draw after Chanderpaul buys time for West Indies

Chanderpaul's hundred and ninth-wicket stand of 65 with Edwards forced India to give up on the teasing target of 180 from 47 overs.

ROSEAU, Dominica // The veteran Shivnarine Chanderpaul completed an unbeaten 116 and shared a lengthy ninth-wicket stand of 65 with Fidel Edwards that helped secure a draw for the West Indies in the third and final Test against India at Windsor Park.

The hosts, overnight 224 for six, were inspired by Chanderpaul's 23rd Test century and batted until midway through the second session in pushing on to 322. The 36 year old faced 343 deliveries and occupied the crease for 505 minutes. Edwards contributed a valuable 30 that spanned 106 balls.

India, set a competitive 180 to win off 47 overs, had a sniff of victory when opener Murali Vijay (45) and Rahul Dravid (34 not out) added 73 for the second wicket.

But two wickets to Ravi Rampaul (2-31) forced the visitors to abandon the chase at 94 for three with 86 runs still needed from the last 15 overs.

India sealed the three-match series 1-0 following a victory in the opening Test in Jamaica.

India captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni explained the decision not to pursue the difficult equation in the final hour.

"The gamble was quite high for us. We were risking a series win," Dhoni said. "We gave it a go but then we realised it was not really worth going. I think at the right time, we called it a day and said we're happy with the series win."

Chanderpaul, 73 overnight, and Sammy began the day positively, sharing a 32-run stand for the seventh wicket as the hosts battled to avoid defeat.

But Sammy fell in controversial fashion, unlucky to be given out caught at bat-pad by umpire Richard Kettleborough as he prodded forward. TV replays confirmed the ball clipped his pad and then his chest on its way to short leg. Sammy struck two fours in 17 off 37 balls.

One run later and it was more disaster for the hosts as a dawdling Rampaul was run out for 1 by Ishant Sharma's direct hit from backward point at 256 at eight.

Chanderpaul pushed on to three figures as Edwards showed a broad bat even after being hit a nasty blow on the right ear by a Munaf Patel bouncer.

Chanderpaul brought up his century off 265 balls, celebrating by falling to his knees and giving prayer before kissing the pitch.

Chanderpaul and Edwards defied the Indian attack for two hours, 40 minutes either side of lunch and seemed set to steer the hosts to a draw.

But part-time off-spinner Suresh Raina claimed Edwards and last man Devendra Bishoo in quick succession to set up the possibility of a thrilling finale to the inaugural Test at this venue.

Edwards notched his highest Test score but just as the West Indies were looking safe, he lofted a drive off Raina straight to mid-off. Edwards faced 106 deliveries and struck two boundaries.

One run later, Bishoo (1) edged a drive off Raina to slip where Dravid pouched a fine, two-handed catch to his right.

Chanderpaul was left not out for the 36th time in his career.

In front of an animated crowd of 10,000, Fidel Edwards lifted home team hopes of a surprise win when he removed Mukund with an inswinger with the first ball of the innings.

He worked up some pace and also caused some anxious moments for Vijay and Dravid but there was no more success before the tea break.

Vijay upped the tempo after the interval in motoring to his highest score of the series and Dravid supplied levelheaded assistance as the target came into view.

But Rampaul (2-31) removed Vijay and Raina at a crucial time and India quickly went into safety-first mode to make sure they would preserve its 1-0 series lead.

Chanderpaul, in his record 133rd Test, earned the Man of the Match while fast bowler Ishant Sharma, who took 22 wickets in the three Tests, grabbed the Man of the Series award.

SCORECARD

West Indies 1st innings 204
India 1st innings 347

West Indies (2nd Innings, overnight 224 for six):
A Barath c Kohli b Kumar 6
K Powell c Raina b Sharma 4
K Edwards c Dhoni b Harbhajan Singh 110
DM Bravo c Kumar b Harbhajan Singh 14
S Chanderpaul not out 116
M Samuels lbw b Harbhajan Singh 0
C Baugh c Mukund b Kumar 10
D Sammy c Mukund b Harbhajan Singh 17
R Rampaul run out (Sharma) 1
F Edwards c Kumar b Raina 30
D Bishoo c Dravid b Raina 1
Extras (b8, lb2, w1, nb2) 13

Total (all out, 131.3 overs) 322

Fall of wickets: 1-8 (Barath), 2-10 (Powell), 3-40 (Bravo), 4-201 (K Edwards), 5-201 (Samuels), 6-223 (Baugh), 7-255 (Sammy), 8-256 (Rampaul), 9-321 (Edwards)
Bowling: Kumar 21-6-44-2; Sharma 27-5-76-1 (nb1, w1); Patel 24-5-71-0 (nb1); Harbhajan Singh 42-14-75-4; Raina 15.3-2-32-2; Mukund 2-0-14-0

India 2nd Innings (target: 180)
A Mukund lbw b Edwards 0
M Vijay c Bishoo b Rampaul 45
R Dravid not out 34
S Raina c and b Rampaul 8
V Laxman not out 3
Extras (lb1, nb3) 4

Total (3 wkts, 32 overs) 94

Fall of wickets: 1-0 (Mukund), 2-73 (Vijay), 3-86 (Raina)
Bowling: Edwards 8-1-19-1 (nb2); Rampaul 11-2-31-2 (nb1); Sammy 5-0-26-0; Bishoo 8-1-17-0