India is on course for a significant first-innings lead after off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin claimed 5-60 to bundle out West Indies for only 150 runs on the opening day of the first test at Windsor Park in Roseau on Wednesday.
After India’s spinners made excellent use of a slow pitch to put the visitors in control, their new opening partnership of skipper Rohit Sharma and debutant Yashasvi Jaiswal then raised 80 runs without being separated.
Left-hander Jaiswal was batting on 40 at stumps with Rohit on 30 at the other end. Summing up India’s day, Ashwin, who registered his 33rd five-wicket haul in test cricket, said: “Pretty good performance.” There was moisture in the pitch in the first session. It got slow and started to spin a bit more,” he added.
West Indies skipper Kraigg Brathwaite was left to rue his decision to bat first after winning the toss in the opener of the two-match series. After recognising the slowness of the track, Rohit introduced Ashwin in the ninth over and the off-spinner struck in his third over when he spun on past Tagenarine Chanderpaul’s (12) bat to hit the top of the off-stump.
It also made Ashwin, who has claimed the wicket of Shivnarine Chanderpaul four times, the fifth bowler to dismiss a father-son pair in test cricket. Brathwaite made 20 before falling to Ashwin and West Indies lost the top half of their batting order to reach 76.
Only Alick Athanaze (47) showed some resistance with the bat but was denied a fifty by Ashwin. Left-arm spinner Ravindra Jadeja backed up Ashwin by claiming the wickets of Jermaine Blackwood, Joshua Da Silva and Kemar Roach.
When India began their reply, Jaiswal took 16 balls to open his account but the 21-year-old soon overtook Rohit to be on course for a half-century in his first India outing. He just reverse swept the first ball of the last over,” Ashwin said of Jaiswal. That’s what you can expect from him. He is very vibrant, hope he goes far.
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