Bravo hundred unable to save Windies from defeat

October 18, 2016 in Sports

CricketFilePhoto-1DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (CMC) – Darren Bravo’s attritional eighth Test hundred carried West Indies close, but the Caribbean side lost the plot in the final hour, to collapse to a 56-run defeat to Pakistan, late on a tense final day of the historic day/night Test on Monday.

The elegant left-hander carved out a composed 116 as West Indies, chasing an improbable 346 for victory at the Dubai International Stadium, were dismissed for 289 in their second innings with 12 overs left in the contest.

Captain Jason Holder finished on 40 not out while Roston Chase made 35 but with tension building in the Pakistani camp, West Indies suddenly lost their last four wickets for 26 runs to watch their challenge dissipate.

Purposeful focussed batting saw them start the final session on 232 for six – requiring 134 runs for victory – but the turning point came with Bravo’s dismissal, 50 minutes before the scheduled close.

The 27 year old, unbeaten on 26 at the start, had played flawlessly up that point when he mis-timed one of his trademark booming drives for leg-spinner Yasir Shah to leap to his left and snaffle a sharp return catch, and breathe new life into Pakistan’s victory bid.

All told, Bravo faced 249 balls in a marathon 6-¾ hours at the crease, and struck ten fours and a six.

His dismissal at 263 for seven was the break Pakistan needed as West Indies quickly disintegrated thereafter.

Seven overs later with 13 runs added, the left-hander Devendra Bishoo was plumb lbw for three playing back to left-arm spinner Mohammad Nawaz and two needless run outs then ensured a farcical end to the innings.

Miguel Cummins perished for one in a mix-up with Holder over a single and five overs later, Shannon Gabriel desperate dive failed to secure him after he and Holder attempted another suicide single.

Seamer Mohammad Amir claimed three for 63 while left-arm spinner Mohammad Nawaz (2-32) and Yasir (2-113) finished with two wickets apiece.