Rookie batsman Roston Chase conjured up a heroic maiden Test century to lead a remarkable West Indies fightback as the hosts forced a frustrating draw on India on the final day of the second match, here Wednesday.
Chase, playing only his second Test match, came up with a resolute 137 off 269 balls and in the process raised three match-saving partnerships with his teammates.
The 24-year-old batsman batted through the day and became only the fourth West Indies player to score a hundred and claim a five-wicket haul in same match. He had returned figures of five for 121 in India’s first innings.
Chase joined three illustrious West Indies names—Sir Garfiled Sobers, Collie Smith and Dennis Atkinson—on the list of Caribbean players, who achieved the feat in the past.
West Indies began the day at a pitiable 48 for four but lost only two wickets in the entire fifth day, scuppering India’s ambitions to take a 2-0 lead in the four-match series.
Chase joined overnight batsman Jermaine Blackwood (63) at the start of play in the morning and raised a 93-run stand for the fifth wicket to deny India much success.
As sun shone bright and sunny, the wicket eased out a lot and hardly offered any assistance to the Indian bowlers.Chase then weaved a 144-run partnership with next-man in Shane Dowrich (74), who became a victim of umpire Ian Gould’s misjudgement on an LBW appeal by R Ashwin.
After Dowrich’s dismissal, skipper Jason Holder joined his junior colleague and provided him tremendous support by hitting a fighting unbeaten 64, putting together a 103-run stand for the unconquered seventh wicket.
Chase’s knock had 15 shots to the fence and one over the ropes while holder struck eight fours and six.
Only 29 overs remained in the last session of the match to be bowled as India looked to make use of the new ball. But they were never happy with the proceedings, complaining often to the umpires about the shape of the ball, even though the ball wasn’t changed.Chase and Holder were helped in their endeavour by the Indian pacers, in particular Ishant Sharma (1/56) who bowled short and wide repeatedly.
The spinners couldn’t get much purchase from the pitch either, which was shorn of day five characteristics and the batsmen did not have much difficulty in negotiation the Indian bowling.
The two teams shook hands with 35 minutes left before the scheduled close of play. India lead the series 1-0 and the third Test is scheduled to begin on August 9 at Gros Islet.