The captain of West Indies, Darren Sammy was convinced that his team will make a comeback in the series with a positive finishing touch which was lacking.
The Windies remained on top almost in the entire first Test which came to an end on April 11, 2011 at Kensington oval, Bridgetown, Barbados. They started off well and plundered 449 runs for the loss of nine wickets when their first innings was declared. Their batsmen punished the Aussies bowling at their will, the master batsman Shivnarine Chanderpaul remained unbeaten for a majestic knock of 103 as Kirk Edwards, Kraigg Brathwaite and Darren Bravo chipped in with timely half centuries.
The bowling battery of the Windies fired back in the first innings of the Kangaroos and restricted them at 285 for the loss of eight wickets when the tail ender batsmen came to their rescue. Ryan Harris played am impressive knock down the order and remained unbeaten for his career best unbeaten 68 as Ben Hilfenhaus and Nathan Lyon scored valuable 24 and 40 runs respectively. They scored 406 runs after losing nine wickets when Michael Clarke made a bold decision on the fourth day by declaring the innings with a deficit of 43 runs.
The decision paid off as the plans crafted by Clarke were carried on by his bowlers and the home side was in trouble by losing five top order batsmen for mere 71 runs at stumps on day four. Their second innings was folded back for 148 runs in 66.4 overs on the fifth day and the visitors were required to score 192 runs to win the match.
Australia started off well in their second innings as they lost the second wicket at 106 runs and they were cruising well towards the target. The part time Caribbean spinner, Narsingh Deonarine, struck at the right time and bulldozed the top order batting of the visitors by grabbing four top class batsmen. Their prominent leg spin bowler, Devendra Bsihoo remained unimpressive from the other end even when the pitch was having cracks and assisting the slow bowlers.
The Windies ground fielding was sloppy in the second innings as they dropped two important catches of Ed Cowan and Shane Watson in the early part of the innings which proved costly. Australia managed to achieve the target by scoring 192 runs and won the match by just three wickets.
Darren Sammy hailed the performance of his bowlers throughout the match except for Bishoo in the second innings who was out of colours as their batsmen surrendered in the second innings and were unable to provide a finishing touch. He said,
“I think the bowlers stuck to the plan most of the times, the way the batsmen batted in the first innings leaving along a lot of balls was good. Shiv [Shivnarine Chanderpaul] again showed his experience. We did some good stuff, we just lost it in the second innings.”
West Indies was in command of the game except for a couple of hours in the early part of their second innings on the fourth day when they lost five important wickets which made the difference in the match. The second Test of the three match series will commence from April 15, 2012 at the Queen’s Park Oval, Port of Spain, Trinidad. The wicket is predicted to assist the spinners and Sammy urged his team to have the self confidence to beat Australia with a better finishing of the game. The skipper further commented,
“We just lost two hours to Australia in the whole Test match and we’ve got to come back strong and in Trinidad where the wicket should offer some more spin. We have to just go out there and believe we can beat Australia and play five good days of cricket.”