Tag Archives: Indian Cricketer

Faiz Fazal Makes Smashing ODI Debut as India Flatten Zimbabwe 3-0

Faiz Fazal justified his selection to the Indian ODI team with an unbeaten fifty against a hapless Zimbabwean side in Harare. On Wednesday, the Vidarbha cricketer earned his first cap from Mahendra Singh Dhoni

Faiz Fazal made his debut for India vs Zimbabwe in Harare on Wednesday. (Image credit: BCCI/Twitter) / © Twitter
Faiz Fazal made his debut for India vs Zimbabwe in Harare on Wednesday. (Image credit: BCCI/Twitter) /
© Twitter

Faiz Fazal on Wednesday became only the third cricketer from Vidarbha to represent India when he replaced Karun Nair for the third and final One-Day International against Zimbabwe in Harare. He justified his selection by scoring an unbeaten 55 as India coasted to a  10-wicket win to sweep the series 3-0 .

Only Prashant Vaidya and Umesh Yadav are the other two from Vidarbha to have played for the Indian cricket team. Both Vaidya and Yadav are pace bowlers.

The 30-year-old Fazal had almost lost hope of getting selected for India but was surprised when he was picked for the tour of Zimbabwe last month. This was purely on the basis of his fine domestic performance.

The Nagpur-born Faiz fazal scored a century playing for Rest of India against Mumbai in the Irani Trophy in March. In January, he scored a century in the Deodhar Trophy final playing for India A vs India B.

On Wednesday, the left-handed opening batsman realised his dream when he was handed the India cap by none other than skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni  .

Though the result of the match in inconsequentioal, Fazal can make an impact with his performance ahead of the three-match Twenty20 International series which starts on Saturday.

Fazal, who has 79 first class matches under his belt, has been through the domestic grind for close to a decade now, and was playing league cricket in England when he got selected. He was part of the Rajasthan Royals squad for four seasons before he was left out in 2012. He scored 183 runs in 11 innings for the Royals.

“This is a massive surprise for me,” Fazal told ESPNcricinfo after he was picked for the Zimbabwe tour.

“For two years before this, I kept looking up to see if I was picked every time a squad was announced. But I was disappointed each time.

“I’ve tried to consciously steer away from thoughts about selection, so to receive this news early morning from India is a big surprise, but I’m happy. It’s funny how when you stop expecting something you have always chased, things start to happen.”

The Nagpur-born has 5341 runs in first class at an average of 40.15 with 11 centuries and a highest score of 200 not out. He can roll his arm over too with some medium pace bowling and also has one four-wicket haul in his domestic career.

source: http://www.sports.ndtv.com / NDTV Sports / Home> Cricket> News / by Sandip Sikdar / June 15th, 2016

Let’s get this straight: Bhajji’s helping Parvez Rasool


Rasool’s heart swells with pride when Jammu and Kashmir chief minister Omar Abdullah tweets about him. If nothing, it motivates the star all-rounder.

Of late, Rasool has been trying to add a few more weapons in his armoury. A meeting with Harbhajan Singh helped him learn the “seedha”. Spinners love to turn the ball, but they often employ the ‘straighter one’. Rasool is happy he has learned it from the master. “Bhajji bhai taught me how to bowl a ‘seedha’ during the recent Irani Trophy game. Now, it’s up to me to master it,” he told dna on Saturday.

Harbhajan has rattled batsmen the world over with his straight ones. In fact, the delivery is often considered the most dangerous weapon of an off-spinner. “Bhajji bhai demonstrated the foot position along with the grip. I’ve been trying hard to master this delivery during practice sessions,” said Rasool, who is the first player from Kashmir to have made the Indian squad and played the IPL.

But Rasool is completely against the idea of changing his bowling action. In other words, he won’t do an R Ashwin! “Variations are important, but sticking to the basics is the key to success. I would not compromise with my action at any point. At the same time, I would like to have a few more variations up my sleeve,” he said.

Rasool, who is leading J&K in the Vijay Hazare Trophy, is enjoying that “extra attention”. “It’s obvious that I get more attention, especially from people from my state. And why not?” asks Rasool, adding, “It makes me even more determined to do well and become the first cricketer from my state to play for India. Insha’Allah (God-willing), I will be able to justify this faith.”

Rasool was recently snapped up by Sunrisers Hyderabad for Rs 95 lakh and he is eagerly waiting to make his mark in the IPL. “Like any other player, I, too, was excited on the day of the auction but I could not watch it because I had a flight to catch. It was only when I landed in Bangalore for the Irani Cup tie that I realised I had been bought. I received a lot of congratulatory messages,” Rasool informed. In fact, his smile said it all.

source: http://www.dnaindia.com / DNA / Home> Sport / by Chander Shekhar Luthra / Place:New Delhi,  Agency:DNA /  Sunday – March 02nd, 2014 

U19 World Cup a good platform for youngsters: Kaif

Mumbai :

Middle-order batsman Mohammad Kaif on Saturday said the ICC U19 World Cup , which started on Friday in the UAE, is a good platform for the budding cricketers.

“We also came through under-19. We won the World Cup in Sri Lanka .  Virat Kohli  was captain of under-19 team that won the World Cup (later). Unmukt Chand too. It is a good platform for youngsters to show their talent. Then they get the opportunity in Ranji to show their talent,” said Kaif, who is here to play for Air India in the BCCI Corporate Trophy tournament that starts tomorrow.

Kaif, who led the U-19 team that also included Yuvraj Singh to the Junior World Cup title triumph in 2000, said the tournament was also a good base for the youngsters to start their international career.

“It is a good base and a good opportunity for youngsters. But I think they should also be given opportunity for 2-3 years in Ranji to see how they are improving. Playing for one or two years in the Ranji after under-19 is good for their maturity,” he said.

The 33-year-old, who is known for his sharp fielding, gave a few tips at the BKC ground to under-15 Mumbai players, Prithvi Shaw and Arjun Tendulkar.

“I told them go low and take the start and told them about the hand position. I told them to keep their hands a little wide for the catch,” he said.

Kaif, who has played 13 Tests and 125 ODIs, was impressed with Shaw’s batting and fielding.

“I saw him batting in the nets. This is the first time I am seeing him. Pravin Amre sir (AI coach) told me he had scored 500 runs in one match and is very talented. He was fielding well.”

Arjun, son of veteran Sachin Tendulkar, also caught Kaif’s attention with his left arm bowling.

“I faced Arjun in the nets. He bowls well. His release from the seam is quite good. He is not like his father and bowls lefty. Sachin paaji was a right-arm batsman and right-arm bowler. But he used to throw left-handed sometimes when he was in the mood,” the UP player said.

source: http://www.timesofindia.indiatimes.com / The Times of India / Home> Sports> Cricket> Series & Tournament / by PTI / February 15th, 2014

Baig Differs With MSD, Says Ashwin Should’ve Played

Former India star Abbas Ali Baig, who was in the city on Saturday to receive a Lifetime Achievement award from Rotary Club of Madras East, is disappointed the way the Indians are faring in the ongoing series in New Zealand.


The former all-rounder, who played 10 Test matches from 1959-69 and forged a famous friendship with the late MAK Pataudi and ML Jaisimha, is unhappy with the application showed by the batsmen, the skipper’s selection of spinners although he thinks the likes of Cheteshwar Pujara and Virat Kohli have it in them to turn the corner. It’s on these two that Baig is pinning hopes for the future.

“I think along with Pujara, Kohli is the best man for the job. Kohli to me is the biggest asset that Indian cricket has. He can change the complexion of the game single-handedly. So if he puts his head down and spends time in the middle, it will of great help to the team,” said Baid, who was known for his classy right-handed stroke-play.

“I think Pujara will be the key man. He has a penchant for big scores, possesses a good technique and also has the ability to play a wide range of shots. Pujara will have a big role to play,” said Baig, who scored a century on Test debut against England in Manchester in 1959.

On the other hand, Baig agreed with former New Zealand skipper Martin Crowe  that India should have fielded off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin instead of left-armer Ravindra Jadeja.

“I agree with Crowe, an off-spinner would have been a better choice when you have a couple of left-handers in the opposition. Ashwin was down a bit in the ODIs and I guess that’s why he was not picked.”

Baig was not very hopeful of India’s chances of saving the first Test in Auckland, although he said there is a chance if they can build partnerships. They still have a lot of runs to score. Overall, the performance has been disappointing. It will be interesting to see how they approach the game. Yes, they need big partnerships.”

Skipper MS Dhoni is an excellent finisher but has not been able to play that role in the ODI series. Is his match-winning ability on the wane? “He is still capable of saving the side and play a long innings as he has done in past. In the last two or three games he has not been able to live up to that expectation.”

source: http://www.newindianexpress.com / The New Indian Express / Home> Cricket> News / by Ashok Venugopal / ENS – Chennai / February 09th, 2014

Shami Sensational, But Kiwis Hold Edge


Sometimes, a simplistic gauging of skills through numbers is insufficient. Take for instance, Mohammed Shami’s in the first innings– 28-6-95-1. Someone who hasn’t seen him bowl would grossly understate him and his craft. That he was profusely unlucky on the first morning dissipates into thin vacuum in the final stock-checking of history through numbers. The number of times he beat the bat and the catches dropped won’t be factored in.

Young bowlers react differently to it. Most would be wide-eyed and desperate. Some turn petulant and fidgety. Some are beset with doubts. A few, though, would simply remain unflustered.  Shami conforms to the latter group. For all the lack of luck in the first innings, Shami remained impervious to it.  If any, he just improvised on his bowling.

He pitched the ball a couple of centimeters further to the batsmen, almost a drivable length but not quite drivable. And he was faster by a few yards and he swung the ball both ways. And this time round, he got a wicket off the last ball of the first over. The delivery that pinged Hamish Rutherford wasn’t any magical but simply perfect. It pitched on middle and snuck back just onto his pads.

His next wicket—again off the last ball of an over—came off smart planning. He mixed his length to Peter Fulton before eventually snapping him up with a routine half-volley. In the first over, he tempted him to drive whereas in the second, he pushed him onto the back-foot with short-of-length balls shaping into his body. Fulton, with a tendency to keep his feet static, drove from the crease and edged to Ravindra Jadeja at short-cover.

He almost consumed Ross Taylor with the first ball of his next over, only for the edge to fall short of the gully. Three balls later, an inside edge saved him from being trapped adjacent. He tested his technique as well temperament, and the latter survived more by default than design. His four overs before lunch set the tone for India’s belated comeback. “No doubt he is a match-winner. His quality to take wickets in bunches is what decides him from a good bowler to a really, really good bowler” Zaheer Khan said later.

After lunch, too, he steamed in and harassed Taylor, who by then had shed his intentions to attack. But for the odd ball that strayed down, Taylor shut-shop completely. And he was lucky that he wasn’t subject to embarrassment like Corey Anderson.  Shami took most of the balls away from him before he made one snake back. Anderson was caught unawares and the balls sneaked through the gate.

And for the first time in the series, India’s bowlers demonstrated pack mentality. Shami was duly supplemented by Zaheer Khan and Ishant Sharma. Even Jadeja, wasteful hitherto, strangled the batsmen.


New Zealand (1st innings) 503. India (1st innings, overnight 130-4) Rohit b Boult 72, Rahane c Taylor b Southee 26, Dhoni c Watling b Wagner 10, Jadeja (not out) 30, Zaheer c Watling b Wagner 14, Ishant c Boult b Southee 0, Shami c Fulton b Wagner 2, Extras (b-5, lb-6, w-3, nb-3) 17, Total (10 wickets, 60 overs) 202. Fall of wickets: 1-1, 2-3, 3-10, 4-51, 5-138, 6-138, 7-167, 8-188, 9-189. Bowling: Boult 17-2-38-3, Southee 19-6-38-3, Anderson 5-0-29-0, Wagner 11-0-64-4, Sodhi 6-0-13-0, Williamson 2-0-9-0.

New Zealand (2nd innings) Fulton c Jadeja b Shami 5, Rutherford lbw Shami 0, Williamson c Jadeja b Zaheer 3, Taylor c Rahane b Zaheeer 41, B McCullum (run out) 1, Anderson b Shami 2, Watling b Ishant 11, Southee c Pujara b Jadeja 14, Sodhi c Rohit b Ishant 0, Wagner c Jadeja b Ishant 14, Boult (not out) 7, Extras (b-4, w-1, nb-2) 7, Total (all out; 41.2 overs) 105. Fall of wickets: 1-1, 2-9, 3-11, 4-15, 5-25, 6-63, 7-78, 8-78, 9-80. Bowling: Shami 12-1-37-3, Zaheer 9-2-23-2, Ishant 10.2-3-28-3, Jadeja 9-4-10-1, Rohit 1-0-3-0.

India (2nd Innings)  Vijay c Watling b Southee 13, Dhawan (batting) 49, Pujara (batting) 22, Extras (w-1, nb-2) 3,  Total (one wicket; 25 overs) 87. Fall of wicket: 1-36. Bowling: Boult 6-0-28-0, Southee 5-0-18-1, Wagner 6-2-11-0, Anderson 3-0-8-0, Sodhi 4-1-17-0, Williamson 1-0-5-0.

source: http://www.newindianexpress.com / The New Indian Express / Home> Cricket> News / by Sandeep G. / ENS – Chennai / February 09th, 2014

I was beaten because of Mr Bachchan: Mohammed Azharuddin

Mohammed Azharuddin has turned 50. He lost his grandfather, the man he loved the most on November 17, 1984. Azhar debuted on December 31, 1984, scoring three centuries. In his 17- year cricketing career, he was captain for nine years. A life ban on playing cricket, divorce with his wife Naureen , second marriage and separation from Sangeeta Bijlani, losing a 19-year-old son to a road accident — he has seen it all. 

(Ekta Kapoor and Mohammed…)
(Ekta Kapoor and Mohammed…)

In the words of Ekta Kapoor , who has now bought the rights of making a film on his life, he is a Victim and a Victor who has emerged victorious. He had led a glorious life, but one that was never picture- perfect. He is humble, emotionally strong and very stylish. Bombay Times spoke exclusively to both about their reasons for making and agreeing to this film on one of India’s greatest cricketing icons. Excerpts:

In conversation with Ekta Kapoor: There are several cricketing legends. Why a film based on Azharuddin?
My dad is an obsessive cricketing fan and for him, Azhar sir is a cricketing god. My dad has shifted his interest in the construction business and is usually not interested in any of the movies I have made. But, he is jumping for this movie. Like my mother, Azhar sir, too, is an Aquarian and number 8. She too likes him, does not cry and is strong for everybody around her. He has been the captain all his life, be it on the field or off it. Some people are victims and some are victors, but those who are victorious have their collar up like he always does.

You can make a documentary on 100 cricketers. But that is only one level of the film. I remember I was 26 when I was awarded the Ernst & Young award for being the youngest and the first woman to be given the award. But four days after, I was told that the award could not be given to me as my TRPs were fake. No one really takes you to a courtroom as in the minds of people, they want to believe that you are wrong. Eventually, it got proved that I was right when Rahul Bajaj called me and gave me the award. I have never enjoyed picking up an award more than that, sitting amongst such old men. At the same time, on the day I was being given the award, due to a personal issue that morning, my happiness was diluted. And that’s what happens in life too, where life is not picture perfect. And I am here to tell his story.

Here is a man who has been condemned but has stood up. Some people wear age on their face, some wear experience. He wears his experience. I had decided that I will just pick up the phone and tell him that we want to present your life. It’s a life with a lot of blemishes, a lot of colour. The best thing about his life is that it is not picture-perfect as one thing was always missing. For instance, he played only 99 matches, not 100. I am not a cricket fan. I am a fan of the man. People have pushed him down, but he stood up and walked and at 50, stands tall. He is an icon whose story needs to be told.

In conversation with Mohammed Azharuddin: You are 50. Are you excited about a film being made on your life?
I am happy. I was very reluctant and took one year to agree. I realised that people want to know my story. I have gone through a lot of ups and downs and a lot of hardwork. The biggest thing I possess is infinite patience. Once you are patient, things fall in place. During that period of time, I could have said so many things that would have backfired on me. But I didn’t, only due to my patience. At the end of the day, it took a long time but you can’t fight destiny. Whatever is destined to happen will happen. I am excited to see how the film will be made. There are many struggles that I have forgotten, but the film will probably remind me of those. I am a positive person and the story is finally a positive one.

Where do you get your patience from?
My religion. Allah is with people who show patience. If you are down in the dumps, Allah will help you if you have belief. But this is a personal thing between you and him. You can’t fool Allah. I remember after I scored my three 100s in my first match, this photographer saw me praying and wanted to take pictures. I was reluctant, but allowed him to. He came the next day and wanted to take them again as he said that despite him taking so many pictures, his reel was blank.

Why do you always have your collar standing?
I used to always field at silly point or point, where the rays of the sun were always very strong and my neck would burn. So, I started wearing a handkerchief, but it was uncomfortable. I later moved to collar that has now become my style. People like me this way.

What do you consider your strengths?
My strength is my humility. When you are humble, people like you. I feel happy when people tell me, ‘Sir, you should play now also.’ I know I can’t physically. I keep myself fit. Somebody today tells me, ‘Why don’t you go and play in New Zealand?’ They know I can’t play, but it’s their feeling that makes them say that. I have always been strong and never show my emotions. I will be the last person to come and say, ‘Well done.’ Number 8 is an up-and-down number, When you are up, nobody can touch you, but when you are down, everybody pulls you down. Emotionally, I depend only on myself. My strong belief in the Almighty carries me.

What do you think are the qualities the actor who will play you should possess?
He needs to be stylish. People tell me that my game was very stylish. I learnt to be stylish over time. Allah gave me the talent. I showed it on the field. Saif Ali Khan, due to his cricketing background and style, would be my first choice, but Ekta is the boss and will decide.

Do you watch Hindi movies?
My favourite movie is Abhimaan as my favourite actor Mr Amitabh Bachchan was in it. The only time my mum lifted her hand at me was when she caught me listening to Sholay dialogues by the roadside. That is the only time she beat me. Long back, I told Mr Bachchan that, ‘Sir, because of you I got beaten.’ Nobody can touch Mr Bachchan in style.

You never showed your emotion on the field. Have you ever broken down in life?
I broke down only when I lost my grandfather Mir Vajehuddin (nana). I was 21 then and it was November 17, 1984. I debuted a month later on December 31 and made three 100s. Till his last day when he died of a heart attack, I would sleep in between my nana and nani. He was a very pious man, who was a descendent of Prophet Mohammed’s family, so he belonged to his lineage. I can always feel him next to me. At times, I was not even allowed to watch films when I was growing up as he would say, ‘No, this is not your line.’ I would get frustrated. I would tell him, ‘You let everybody go, but don’t let me go.’ And he would say, ‘You will remember me one day.’ Can you imagine that the autograph I sign was taught to me by him. He signed for me and would make me practise it 50-60 times a day. He was a brilliant mathematician, who could count in Arabic and Persian and give the answer in English. He taught me a lot of things. He said, ‘Stay humble as that is the best thing you can possess in life. The day you think you are somebody, you will come down.’ You couldn’t talk to him looking into his eyes, as he had very powerful eyes. He would never look into a camera as he would say that the camera would break if he did so.

He never told me but he told my mother, ‘Don’t tell him but he will become a big cricketer’ My parents too were very supportive of me playing. My father had only one wish that I should score a 100 at the Lords cricket ground, which made him very happy when I did. I would get up at 4.30 in the morning and before going to practice, I would give my grandmother tea. At that time, she would give me her blessings, which were very powerful. I am the eldest son (five younger siblings) and it is my job to play captain even at home. I never show my emotions. When my son passed away, so many times I felt like crying, but then there are so many people behind me, like my parents. If I break down. they will break down and I need to carry them with me. My mother even today keeps telling me, ‘Allah should have taken me.’ It was very tough for them as within a week, they had lost two grandchildren.

Talk about your relationship with Kapil Dev?
Kapil paji is a very nice man. He understands people. He could take anything from my kit bag and so could I. We did not need to ask each other. Usually people don’t give even their broken bats to you. You have to a have a big heart to give. If you give, you get. If you don’t give, you don’t get. I had that rapport with him. I played under him and he played under me. As a captain, I didn’t need to tell him anything as he knew everything exactly what he had to do. I would just give him the ball. I knew he knew his job and if he goes on to the field, he will do his job. I learnt from him. If he is convinced, he will support you. Mr Kamal Morarka and Mr Raj Singh Dungarpur also helped me. I didn’t meet Mr Morarka many times, but at that time he really supported me. He is a nice person who is not scared of anybody. That’s what is most important. He will express what he feels. I never forget people who help me.

source: http://www.timesofindia.indiatimes.com / The Times of India / Home> Entertainment> Hindi> Bollywood / by Priya Gupta, TNN / January 31st, 2014

At Eden Gardens, ‘Shami, Shami’ takes over from ‘Sachin, Sachin’

Indian players celebrates their win over West Indies in the first Test match at Eden Garden in Kolkata on Friday. India won by an innings and 51 runs./  PTI Photo
Indian players celebrates their win over West Indies in the first Test match at Eden Garden in Kolkata on Friday. India won by an innings and 51 runs./ PTI Photo

Minutes before the Eden Gardens Test began Wednesday, Mohammed Shami was handed over his maiden Test cap by Ishant Sharma.

Ironic, considering Shami had just replaced Ishant in the eleven for the match against the West Indies. But by the time the Test finished Friday, one that Shami helped end prematurely, the debutant had snatched away Ishant’s long-held title of ‘pace spearhead’ as well.

With a breathtaking display of reverse swing bowling, Shami scissored through the West Indies batting order late on day three to finish with a five-wicket haul in the second innings.

His figures of 5/47 in the second innings ensured that Darren Sammy’s side were bowled out for just 168 and India won the match by an innings and 51 runs. The burst took his match haul to 9/118 — the most by an Indian pacer on debut, bettering Munaf Patel’s 7/97 in Mohali in 2006.

All this took place at his home ground.

The packed house at the Eden had witnessed something rare from an Indian bowler at an Indian ground — speed of over 140 kmph, banana-swinging deliveries and flying stumps.

So special was the unfolding drama that by time the players left the field, the usual crowd chorus of “Sachin, Sachin” had changed to “Shami, Shami”.

M S Dhoni was certain that India had finally been blessed with what they were looking for — a true tearaway.

“Shami is a fantastic find, someone who has great skills,” the Indian captain said at the presentation ceremony. “Everyone was reversing the ball today. But what made Shami’s reverse swing special was the length he bowled.”

West Indies captain Darren Sammy agreed.

“Our bowlers were either too full or too short. Shami had that nagging back-of-a-length spot,” he said. “That’s how it ought to be done.”

That length confused West Indies’s batsmen. Caught in two minds to either push forward or stay back, Shami’s victims ended doing neither. Several middle stumps were flattened.

He did not take any wickets in his first couple of spells with the new ball. But once the leather was about 30 overs old, scruffed up through wear and tear, he was unstoppable.

All his wickets came after over number 31. Two of them fell together in the 49th over. Off the second ball, Sammy positioned himself to block one swinging in wildly from well outside off stump. But the drastic dip in the ball’s height hid under the West Indies captain’s willow. Then it pitched and straightened, boomeranging against the middle stump.

Sammy looked like he had seen a ghost. Just like Shane Shillingford, two balls.

Kapil Dev, however, looked like he had seen a prodigy.

When Ramiz Raja – the former Pakistani player who had captained the gurus of reverse swing, Wasim Akram and Waqar Younis – asked him to point out Shami’s stand-out feature,  Kapil said: “I can’t.   A true fast bowler has many facets — brains, pace, swing and a big heart.  Shami ticks all the above.”

source: http://www.indianexpress.com / Indian Express / by Aditya Iyer / Kolkata,  Saturday – November 09th, 2013

Shami reverse-swings India to fabulous win at Eden Gardens

Kolkata : 

Pacer Mohammad Shami gave an awesome exhibition of reverse swing to cap a dream debut with five second innings wickets as India inflicted an innings defeat on a hapless West Indies inside three days in the first Test to mark a fabulous start to the Sachin Tendulkar  farewell series on Friday.


Shami followed up his 4-71 performance in the first innings with a 5-47 show in the second to claim an enviable match haul of 9-118 — the best ever by an Indian pacer on debut.

Shami’s performance propelled India to an innings and 51-run victory in the first Test at the iconic Eden Gardens.  Offie Ravichandran Ashwin followed up his exploits with the bat (124) with admirable figures of 3-46.

Needing 219 runs to escape the ignominy of an innings upset, the West Indies collapsed like a pack of cards in the final session — 98 minutes into the post tea session — to be bundled out for 168. Veteran Shivnarine Chanderpaul (31 not out; 101 b, 2×4) put up a gritty resistance, but in the end ran out of partners.

In the morning, Ashwin struck his second Test ton (124) and extended his seventh wicket stand with Rohit Sharma  (177) to a staggering 280 to enable the hosts finish at a mammoth 453. The visitors had notched up 234 in their first innings.

Beginning their second knock in the post-lunch session, the West Indies raised the promise of a fightback by reaching 101/1, courtesy a 68-run second wicket stand between Darren Bravo (37; 78 b, 4X4) and  Kieran Powell (36; 83 b, 5×4), but Ashwin began the Caribbean demolition by foxing Powell with a flighted delivery that hit the batsman on the pad plumb in front of the stumps.

Shami – after a listless effort in his first spell – returned with a vengeance close to tea, and saw the back of Marlon Samuels (4) with one that reversed and got him leg before.

In the second over after tea, Bravo tried to cut Ashwin, who had pitched outside the off stump, and the ball dipped into the hands of a diving Rohit Sharma at point. The West Indies were then 120/4.

Shami then jagged one back after pitching on a length just outside the off stump, inducing an inside edge from Windies wicketkeeper Denesh Ramdin (1), which was lapped up by his Indian counterpart.

With half the side gone, Chanderpaul (23) and skipper Darren Sammy (8) tried to put up resistance briefly, but they crumbled in Shami’s 11th over – the 49th of the innings.

The Bengal pacer again pitched on a length outside the off stump, and got the ball to reverse, uprooting Sammy’s middle stump.

Two deliveries later, Shane Shillingfored got a similar ball which unsettled the off stump by breaking through the gate.

There was a further tragedy for the Caribbeans after the next delivery. Shami again extracted reverse swing, and Veerasammy Permaul (0) was struck on the pads. As the Indian fielders appealed, Permaul took a few steps out of the crease, but the alert Dhoni was quick to throw down the stumps to get a run out decision.

The writing on the wall was more than clear, and the West Indies were reeling at 152/8. The formalities were soon completed with Ashwin claiming Tino Best (3) and Shami castling Sheldon Cottrel (5).

Earlier, Resuming at 354/6 overnight, Ashwin and Rohit batted fluently to notch up a stand of 280 – an Indian highest for the seventh wicket – which catapulted the hosts to a strong position.

Ashwin, who had taken the partnership to 200 in the morning’s second over with a streaky boundary off Best, brought up his delightful 100 in the fourth over by pushing the same bowler through the sweeper cover.

Reaching the three-figure mark, a visibly ecstatic Ashwin punched the air as Tendulkar clapped in appreciation in the dressing room balcony. The landmark was reached off 159 balls.

All the four wickets in the morning session were equally shared by the visiting spinners on a track which played slow but gave turn. Shillingford (6-167) claimed his fifth five-wicket haul in 11 Tests. Left armer Veerasammy Permaul (2-67) was the other successful bowler.

Rohit finally departed as he deliberately padded an offering from Permaul which pitched around the off stump and turned away.

Aswhin was claimed by Shillingford with a flighted delivery which beat the batsman and dislodged the middle stump.

source: http://www.timesofindia.indiatimes.com / The Times of India / Home> Sports> Cricket> Series & Tournament> West Indies in India 2013 / by IANS / November 08th, 2013