Rain saves West Indies again


Persistent rain earned West Indies a stay of execution on day four of the second Test against India, but an unlikely draw appears to be the best outcome the hosts can hope for in Kingston.

The Windies reached stumps on Tuesday 48-4 in their second innings, still needing 256 to make the tourists bat again at Sabina Park, India having notched 500-9 declared in response to 196 all out.

A day of very little play saw four wickets fall cheaply in just under 16 overs, Mohammed Shami (2-25), Amit Mishra (1-4) and Ishant Sharma (1-19) doing the damage without exerting themselves against their lacklustre hosts.

Following a start delayed by rain, setting the tone for repeated frustration in Jamaica, Rajendra Chandrika (1) was an early Sharma victim, the ball ricocheting onto his stumps as he attempted to leave a delivery just short of a length outside off in the third over.

After another lengthy delay for rain, three wickets fell in quick succession.

KL Rahul gratefully gathered Kraigg Brathwaite (23) when the surviving opener top-edged attempting to pull a short Mishra delivery pitched outside leg.

Marlon Samuels went for a duck in the next over after facing just five deliveries, his off stump found superbly by Shami.

And two overs later Darren Bravo (20) followed them back to the pavilion, gloving a short Shami ball to Rahul at third slip to end an unconvincing spell at the crease.

Jermaine Blackwood (3) remained unbeaten but Roston Chase did not get the opportunity to join him in the middle as the wet weather kept the teams off throughout the remainder of the day.

West Indies nevertheless face a tough task to survive when play resumes ahead of schedule on day five, with better weather forecast and only six wickets remaining.

India, having won the first Test by an innings and 92 runs in North Sound, will be confident of taking a 2-0 lead into the third match of the four-Test series, which starts in Saint Lucia next Tuesday.