Cricket

Black Caps in uphill struggle

2014-06-18 22:19
Brendon McCullum (Gallo Images)

Port of Spain - New Zealand face an uphill battle for survival at four without loss in their second innings, trailing the West Indies on first innings by 235 runs, at tea on the third day of the second Test at Queen's Park Oval in Trinidad on Wednesday.

With regular opening batsman Hamish Rutherford unable to take his position at the top of the order after being off the field for the day with a stomach upset, captain Brendon McCullum will resume in the final session alongside Tom Latham.

West Indies continued to pile on the runs in the early afternoon, adding another 60 in 80 minutes with debutant Jermaine Blackwood carrying on to an entertaining 63 with six fours and two sixes before his dismissal saw the last three wickets going down for four runs and the home side eventually dismissed for 460 in their first innings, an overall lead of 239.

Leg-spinner Ish Sodhi accounted for Blackwood and wrapped up the innings with the wicket of Jerome Taylor after Jimmy Neesham had Denesh Ramdin taken by a diving Ross Taylor at slip for 32.

Sodhi finished with the best figures of four for 96.

In bright afternoon sunshine, Ramdin had started the post-lunch period with a blaze of strokeplay, taking three boundaries in the opening over off Trent Boult as the eighth-wicket partnership between Ramdin and Blackwood produced 76 runs.

New Zealand managed to remove the two overnight batsmen, Shivnarine Chanderpaul and nightwatchman Kemar Roach, in the morning session.

However two dropped catches at short-leg offered by Blackwood and continued expensive bowling by the supporting cast conspired against the efforts of McCullum to limit the West Indies lead.

Despite a relatively quiet start, when frontline seamers Boult and Tim Southee were at their most challenging, the West Indies managed to add 86 runs off 27 overs in the two hours' play, most of the runs coming off spinners Sodhi and Mark Craig.

Sodhi did have the consolation of having Chanderpaul trapped lbw for 47 just before the interval.

As in the first Test in Jamaica, the experienced left-hander offered no shot to the leg-spinner and was more than a little bemused when the on-field decision of "not out" by standing umpire Ian Gould was overturned by television official Richard Illingworth after McCullum requested a review.

Boult had earlier dispensed with Roach for his third wicket of the innings via a catch at short-midwicket by Neesham.

Read more on:    brendon mccullum  |  cricket
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