Australia beats West Indies in a hard fought first Test

Australia 406-9 declared and 192-7 (Shane Watson 52, Ed Cowan 34, Narsing Deonarine 4-53) beat West Indies 449-9 declared and 148 all out (Darren Bravo 32, Kemar Roach 25, Ben Hilfenhaus 4-27, Ryan Harris 3-31) by 3 wickets.

Ryan Harris - 'Player of the match' for his all round performance
Ryan Harris – 'Player of the match' for his all round performance

Australia won the challenging first Test vs. West Indies in the dispersing light under tense situation as the match could have gone either way.

West Indies hammered 449 -9 when the first innings was declared by Darren Sammy on the second day. Australia had some anxious moments in their first innings but succeeded in scoring 406 runs after losing 9 wickets as Michael Clarke declared the innings. The Caribbeans were dismissed for mere 148 runs in their second innings and the Kangaroos achieved the target of 192 runs for the loss of 7 wickets in 47 overs.

Ryan Harris was declared ‘Player of the match’ for his all round performance in the match as he smashed unbeaten 68 runs in the first innings and held five wickets.

The first match of the three Test series came to an end on April 11, 2012 at Kensington Oval, Bridgetown, Barbados.

Earlier, the Windies started the fifth and final day at 71 with five wickets still in hand after 38 overs whereas Narsingh Deonarine and Carlton Baugh were at the crease with unbeaten 20 and two runs respectively. The home side faced a setback when their only recognised batsman, Deonarine was declared leg before wicket off Ryan Harris with the addition of just one run in his overnight total.

The sixth wicket fell at 75 runs when Darren Sammy came in to bat and survived some anxious moments at the crease against the quality bowling of the visitors but managed 31 runs stand with Baugh. Sammy became the next victim at 106 when he had scored 14 runs and 10 runs later Baugh was gone at his personal score of 23.

Kemar Roach displayed courageous batting in the lower order and resisted the lethal Australian attack to a certain extent before he was clean bowled by Harris for 25 runs. The home side was dismissed for 148 runs in 66.4 overs and they set a target of 192 for the visitors to win the match from the possible 62 overs.

Ben Hilfenhaus was the main destructor with four wickets, Ryan Harris held three, Peter Siddle got two and Shane Watson claimed one wicket.

The Australian chase started under threat of rain and the first wicket produced 31 runs when Shane Watson joined in with Ed Cowan. The latter was dropped on the last ball of the 13th over by the wicketkeeper Carlton Baugh off Darren Sammy for six runs. The sloppy ground fielding of West Indies continued when Watson was dropped on the fourth ball of the next over by Sammy at gully off Roach at four runs. Those two let offs proved costly for the home side as Watson went on to score 52 runs and shared a match winning partnership of 75  for the second wicket.

Cowan became the third victim at 126 runs after he scored 34 runs as Narsingh Deonarine got his second wicket of the day. Australia was in trouble when Deonarine penetrated through their top order and clinched the important wickets of Ricky Ponting and Michael Clarke as the total touched 140. The Aussies still required 52 runs to win the match under tremendous pressure when Michael Hussey took over and played an anchor role with couple of reasonable partnerships.

He smashed 32 off 26 balls with the help of two glorious sixes and even fours as the clouds were heading towards the stadium. He was the seventh batsman to be dismissed as Ryan Harris and Ben Hilfenhaus achieved the target by taking the score to 192 runs.

Narsingh Deonarine was the star performer with four wickets, Kemar Roach got two and Darren Sammy held one wicket.

Australia won the first Test by a narrow margin of three wickets that was applauded by quite a few Australian spectators present in the stadium.


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