The second Test match of the Frank Worrell Trophy between West Indies and Australia has turned in favour of the latter yet again as they reduced the hosts to 16 for two at the end of Day 3 at Sabina Park, Kingston on Saturday.
Earlier, West Indies fought hard to avoid the follow on; courtesy - a special innings from all-rounder Jason Holder, who remained unbeaten at 82 off just 63 balls with 12 boundaries and a couple of sixes. Kemar Roach played a good supporting role alongside Holder to avoid follow on.
Australia did not look bothered much when they came out to bat in the second innings. Openers David Warner and Shaun Marsh played their natural game. Warner, who got dismissed cheaply on the last few occasions, could also score well this time.
The openers added 117 runs for the first wicket when Warner got out. Marsh also followed Warner soon as he threw his wicket away to Veerasammy Permaul. Aussie skipper Michael Clarke played a watchful and rather slow innings alongside Steve Smith who is in the form of his life. Smith scored yet another half century in the second innings of the Test at Sabina Park.
Clarke decided to declare the innings looking at the condition of the pitch when they were 212 for the loss of two wickets. West Indies were given to chase 392 runs. The hosts have so much time to chase the runs down but, as usual, the openers were awful yet again as they succumbed to the fiery pace of Mitchell Starc. Kraigg Braithwaite and Rajindra Chandrika were sent back to the pavillion in the very first over of their second innings.
It was indeed a very bold decision from the Aussie skipper Clarke who decided to declare giving the hosts a chase of 392 runs. West Indies can turn things in their favour as they have two days to win the match and they also have eight wickets in hand. But the way things have gone in this two-match Test series, one might think that the upbeat Aussies would want to seal the match and the series today itself.
West Indies batsmen have really been awful throughout the series. Their dismal batting performances led to the loss in the first Test match and if they cannot face this Australian bowling attack, they will be handed a whitewash in the series.
Meanwhile, the Aussie bowlers have relentlessly managed to trouble the hosts with their fiery pace and some intelligent line and length from Nathan Lyon, who became the highest wicket taking off spinner in Test cricket for Australia on Day 1.
If the Australians manage to win this match and series on Day 4, then it will give them a major boost in confidence just ahead of their Ashes series in England. It has been more than a decade now that the Aussies have won the urn in England. It will be interesting to see whether Australia can clean this West Indies batting order today or will the hosts turn things around in their favour.
Where to Watch Live
West Indies vs Australia 2nd Test match Day 1 is scheduled for a 10:00 AM WIT (7:30 IST, 14:00 GMT and 12:00 AM AEST) start with live coverage in India and West Indies on Ten Cricket. The match can also be watched via live streaming online on cricket.com.au and Tensports.com.
Viewers in the UK can watch the first Test between West Indies and Australia on Sky Sports 2 and Sky Sports 2 HD and can live-stream it on skysports.com.
Cricket fans in Australia can watch the match live on Fox Sports. For viewers in the US, the live streaming will be on Willow TV.