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Windies crash to a heavy defeat on the reserve day

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West Indies crashed to a heavy defeat of 103 runs as its top order failed to cope up with the pressure of chasing a massive target. Skipper Brian Lara did come up with a smooth knock but he was short of potential partners at the other end. The West Indian innings folded to 219 all out in pursuit of the 323 set by the Australians yesterday.

The day began with Shaun Tait getting Chanderpaul lbw with the southpaw playing right across his stumps to a pitched up delivery. Although it looked out to the naked eye, hawk eye suggested that the ball would have slanted away from the off stump. In the 8th over, Chris Gayle succumbed too, going for a nothing shot to have the hosts in an untidy position at 16 for 2. Marlon Samuels also followed the two openers back in the pavilion and Windies had to drop anchor and the runs never came at a good clip. Sarwan took 58 balls to get his 29 which got the required run rate to shoot up a long way. The homeside at the half way stage were going at snail pace at 91 for 4.

West Indies gave it up as each and every ball only raised the required run rate. It looked to be just a formality before they lost. Skipper Brian Lara stayed there facing 83 balls scoring 77 with 8 fours and a six. But even his stay never showed any promise of a West Indian victory. Lara was given lbw off Brad Hogg, who went onto pick up three wickets. The only other bright spot of the West Indian batting was Denesh Ramdin’s 52 that had come in 43 balls with 6 fours. West Indies were bowled out in 45.3 overs with Shaun Tait endings the innings with an inswinging yorker to clean up Daren Powell. Nathan Bracken with 1 for 25 from 9 overs and McGrath with 3 for 31 in 8 overs were responsible for not allowing the West Indians to take off at any stage of their innings. The Man of the Match obviously went to Matthew Hayden for batting the opposition out of the game virtually with his 158.