Kuldeep takes maiden five-for in Tests, India two wickets away from win
Rajkot, Oct 6: Kuldeep Yadav picked up his maiden five-wicket haul in Tests, taking India closer to a crushing win over the West Indies on day three of the series opener here on Saturday.
Forced to follow-on after conceding a 468-run lead, the West Indies batsmen cut a sorry figure again and were 185 for eight at tea in their second innings, trailing the hosts by 283 runs.
The visitors are within touching distance of getting bowled out for the second time in the day after being bundled out for 181 in the first innings before lunch.
Opener Kieran Powell was the only West Indian batsman to make a significant contribution in the second essay, an entertaining 83 off 93 balls with eight boundaries and four sixes.
Ashwin was their main tormentor in the morning and in the second session, it was Kuldeep’s turn to dominate. The opposition batsmen, who needed to spend time in the middle, seemed to be in a hurry to finish the game. Punishing a loose ball is fine but they went for far too many strokes and paid the price for their recklessness.
Kuldeep thrived on that, mixing it up nicely to fox the batsmen. After he trapped Shai Hope in front for his first wicket, he removed the highly-rated Shimron Hetmyer who went for a wild slog across the line to be caught at short third man.
He used his googly to send back Sunil Ambris, who stepped out without having any idea of the way the ball will turn.
Earlier, Ashwin produced a brilliant spell as India enforced the follow-on against the West Indies.
At lunch, the West Indies were 33 for one in nine overs in their second innings with Ashwin removing skipper Kraigg Brathwaite (10) for his fourth wicket of the day.
The West Indies, resuming their first innings at 94 for six, lasted only an hour and 10 minutes, mainly due to efforts of Roston Chase (53) and Keemo Paul (47) who ended up sharing a 73-run stand.
Ashwin ran through the tail on a pitch offering plenty of turn, ending with four for 37 in 11 overs as the West Indies were all out in 48 overs.
India started with spin-pace combination of Kuldeep and Mohammad Shami. Surprisingly, Chase and Paul had little difficulty in picking the chinaman, who bowled the first over of the day.
Paul went on the offensive straightaway, sweeping Kuldeep for two crisp boundaries. Paul was the aggressor in the partnership but Chase also came up with a few attractive shots.
Paul was comfortable against Kuldeep but had issues dealing with the short ball. Umesh Yadav set the West Indian up nicely before getting rid of him with a perfectly placed bouncer as he mistimed a pull to be caught at midwicket.
Ashwin then removed Chase with a beauty, a flighted ball that turned in viciously to create a big gap between bat and pad before crashing into the stumps, leaving the West Indies at 159 for eight.
Number 10 and 11 were easy meat for Ashwin who sent them back with the away turning ball.
India expectedly enforced the follow-on with less than an hour to go for lunch.