Indian bowlers seize initiative as West Indies struggle

Kolkata, Nov 6 (IANS): Debutant pacer Mohammed Shami bowled a spectacular spell while farewell-man Sachin Tendulkar chipped in with a wicket as India seized the initiative in the post-lunch session on day one of the first cricket Test match against the West Indies here Wednesday.

Opting to bat, the West Indies were 192 for seven at the tea break, with Shivnarine Chanderpaul (23 batting) at the Eden Gardens crease.

There were deafening cheers from the stands as Tendulkar -- playing his 199th and penultimate Test match -- got Shane Shillingford leg before off his fourth delivery, prompting the umpires to signal the end of the post-lunch session that belonged squarely to the hosts.

The West Indies, who had gone to lunch on a promising 107 for two, lost five wickets during the session, falling like a pack of cards.

Shami bowled at good pace, getting the ball to reverse to pick up the wickets of Marlon Samuels (65; 98 b, 11x4, 2x6) and Denesh Ramdin (4) during a 7-0-30-2 spell.

Samuels completed his 19th half century in 47 tests in the second over after lunch with a single, but found himself in discomfort against Shami.

The pacer devoured Samuels with a quicker stuff, that pitched on a length, jagged back and went through the gate to uproot the batsman's middle stump, ending his 91-run third wicket stand with Darren Bravo (23; 96 b, 2x4, 1x6).

The West Indies suffered another reverse in the next over, as Bravo played offie Ravinchandran Ashwin to the square leg region, and set out for an improbable run. Chanderpaul did not respond, and Shami threw to wicketkeeper Dhoni who did the rest.

Shami delivered another telling blow in his next over -- Ramdin had no answer to an unplayable ball, that pitched on length and swung back sharply to beat the batsman and knock down the off stump. Losing three wickets in the space of ten balls, the tourists were struggling at 143 for five.

The Caribbeans were further reduced to 172 for six, when skipper Darren Sammy (16) virtually committed suicide, as he tried to loft a turning ball from Pragyan Ojha, and the mis-hit ended in the hands of Bhuvneshwar Kumar.

Almost at the stroke of tea, skipper Dhoni handed the ball to Tendulkar, who took Shillignford with a flighted delivery that dipped on the right-hander and hit him plumb in front.


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