ROSEAU, Dominica — West Indies will be depending on the ever-reliable Shiv Chanderpaul and the capable batting of Ravi Rampaul and Kemar Roach to pull them out of trouble, when the third Digicel Test continues on Wednesday.
Chanderpaul ended Tuesday on 34 not out, with him Rampaul on 24 not out and the pair has so far added 45 runs for the ninth wicket. They will look to pull the homeside around from 165-8 — still 163 away from Australia’s 328 at Windsor Park. Earlier in the innings Adrian Barath (29) and Kieran Powell (40) added 61 for the second wicket.
Toby Radford, the West Indies Assistant Coach said the team is capable of rebounding from a “disappointing” day and backed Chanderpaul to take them closer to the Aussie first innings total. The veteran left-hander has been the stand-out batsman in the Digicel Series with an unbeaten century in first Digicel Test in Barbados and 94 in the next match in Trinidad. He is in his 140th Test match and is just 48 runs away from becoming the second West Indian to reach 10,000 runs in Test cricket.
“In terms of Shiv, he is very selective. Anything outside off-stump he leaves it, makes the bowlers bowl very straight and then he clips them off to the legside,” Radford said. “He had had enormous success all round the world doing it and he’s done it again today and we expect more if the same tomorrow. He holds us together.
“What we need is more people batting around him because he is like a piece of glue and we need others to do the same. Ravi has come in and looked good and we believe he can stay with Shiv for a while tomorrow.”
Radford added: “We are always looking to develop. We always look to analyse and learn and that is my message when we have bad days, that you come in tomorrow and say ‘right, how we going to have a better one’. We must keep learning. I think we are a side who have done well over the last few weeks, we have fought well. This happens to be a bad day and we’ve got to come back with a better one tomorrow, simple as that.”
Radford, a former Director of the Sagicor High Performance Centre, said that most of the top-order players in both team have found the going tough on the three pitches in this series. He urged his young batsmen to learn from the example of Chanderpaul.
“I think it was difficult for both series. I was happy with how we dealt with the new ball today. I thought Barath was good, I thought Powell was good. Having got a really good start against the new ball, suddenly spin did the damage. We had other games where we struggled against the new ball, we have talked a lot about it,” Radford said.
“These are young guys, talented guys, who I think will have good careers and we have got to be patient with them. They are learning and they will learn around people like Shiv at the other end. It’s not suicide for us. You learn, you come back and are stronger. Hopefully we can go to England and then perform there.”
Earlier in the day, West Indies off-spinner Shane Shillingford completed his first five-wicket haul of his Test career. The 29-year-old, who on Monday became the first Dominican to play a Test on home soil, ended with six for 119 off 42.5 overs.
The Australian fightback was led by a superb maiden Test century by wicket-keeper Matthew Wade who went on the attack in a ninth wicket century stand with Ben Hilfenhaus.
“Sometimes in the game of cricket you just have to put your hand up and accept that someone played brilliantly against you and that’s what Wade did today,” Radford said.
“As has been proven throughout the series, the Australians bat very deep and you are never actually through them. You think that you are through them — we’ve got through the top order many times but it has been difficult actually finishing them off.
Radford added: “We have regularly got out top quality players … Watson, Ponting, Clarke. Hussey has been fantastic all the way through, didn’t get any in this game, but they bat very deep. Guys come in at Number 9, 10 or 11 and can hold an end up. I think if we can take anything away it is important that we bat in the same way.”