BRIDGETOWN, Barbados: Roston Chase saved the West Indies from complete collapse with an unbeaten 70 as the home side reached 166 for six at tea on the opening day of the second Test at Kensington Oval on Sunday.
Despite a surface offering very little assistance to the faster bowlers, the Caribbean team lost another three wickets in an afternoon session that produced 94 runs off 27 overs.
Opening bowlers Mohammad Amir and Mohammad Abbas added to their new ball successes from the morning’s play while debutant Shadab Khan claimed an important first Test victim when he had Shane Dowrich caught at slip for 29 just before the interval to break a promising 47-run sixth-wicket partnership with Chase.
Playing his first Test match in his native Barbados, Chase’s attractive innings has so far occupied 110 deliveries, a span at the crease highlighted by 11 fours.
He resumes in the final session of the day alongside compatriot and captain Jason Holder, who will need to provide substantial resistance with the rest of the lower order to justify his decision to bat first on winning the toss.
Kieran Powell, who batted through the morning session, was first to fall on the resumption after lunch.
An lbw appeal off Amir with the batsman on 38 was ruled not out by on-field official Richard Kettleborough only to be overturned on review of the television replays.
Vishaul Singh’s miserable start to his Test career continued with a low catch to Younis Khan at second slip off Abbas and Younis’ secure pair of hands were again in evidence when Dowrich pushed at a full length delivery from Shadab and the veteran made no mistake.
Amir was the first to strike for Pakistan at the start of the day against a batting line-up surprisingly unchanged from the seven-wicket defeat in Jamaica.
Kraigg Brathwaite enjoyed a moment of good fortune when he was dropped at short extra-cover off Amir.
However the lapse did not prove costly for the visitors as Amir took the outside edge of the opener’s bat in the same over to give a straightforward catch to wicketkeeper Sarfraz Ahmed.
Shimron Hetmyer, one of two batting debutants from a week earlier, faced just three deliveries before driving loosely at Abbas for Azhar Ali to take a sharp catch head-high at third slip.
Shai Hope’s struggle for runs continued when he was caught at the wicket off Yasir Shah, the leg-spinner extracting sharp turn off the first-day pitch and appearing to justify Pakistan’s decision to give a debut to Shadab as a second wrist-spinner in their bowling armoury at the expense of their fastest bowler, Wahab Riaz.