x Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 24 July 2017

Windies have victory in sight

A Chris Gayle century has put the West Indies in a winning position against Australia in the second Test at Adelaide Oval.

A Chris Gayle century has put the West Indies in a winning position against Australia in the second Test at Adelaide Oval. The Windies took a conservative approach until the final overs of the third session, adding 101 for five after tea to reach 284 for eight at stumps, giving the visitors a lead of 296. Gayle's streaky play during his first three innings of the series were nowhere to be seen with the tall left-hander rarely troubled in his unbeaten 155 - his first ton against Australia. His 271-ball innings featured 16 boundaries and a six.

Gayle was the dominant force of the innings but Shivnarine Chanderpaul (27), Brendan Nash (24) and Dwayne Bravo (22) provided solid but understated support for their captain. Mitchell Johnson was unpredictable but ended the day strongly to finish with four for 85 while Doug Bollinger got the old ball to swing and took two for 36. The West Indies showed no intent to lift the tempo in the final session but with Sulieman Benn and Kemar Roach in form with the ball, the tourists still have a good chance of taking 10 Aussie wickets on a wearing pitch. Australia have chased bigger totals for victory although batting on the last day at Adelaide Oval has proven tough in the past. Nash added just four more runs to his tea score before being bowled by a Watson yorker for 27.

Bravo took 12 balls to get off the mark and didn't go after the attack like he did during his first-innings century. He did stroke a couple of boundaries but after 74 minutes at the crease he offered a catch to Nathan Hauritz at gully. Denesh Ramdin was bowled by an angled delivery from Johnson in the same over and the Australians displayed extra enthusiasm in the field after a dour period of play. Darren Sammy tried to increase the run rate but the reverse swing of Bollinger saw him sent back to the pavilion with just 10 to his name. Benn received some treatment after copping a Johnson yorker on the foot. He was then dismissed from the following delivery, skying the ball to Peter Siddle on the leg side.

In the morning session, the West Indies progressed to 95 for two with Adrian Barath run out for 17 and Ramnaresh Sarwan caught behind, down the leg side off Johnson for seven. The Windies added 88 in the second session with Gayle scoring his century. The 30-year-old brought up triple figures with a sweep shot for three, jumping for jubilation before he'd completed his first run. * PA Sport