Test: India in command over WI at Eden
Debutant Mohammed Shami Ahmed excelled in iconic Indian batsman Sachin Tendulkar's penultimate Test by picking up four wickets as India virtually took control of the match at end of the first day in first Test against West Indies at Eden Gardens here on Wednesday.
Indian bowled out West Indies for 234.
India were 37 without loss and trailing by 197 runs with ten wickets in hand when stumps were closed for the day.
Openers Shikhar Dawan and Murali Vijay were batting 21 and 16 respectively.
The tourists after winning the toss decided to bat first on the unpredictable Eden pitch, which normally turn in favour of spinners on fourth and fifth day.
Barring the third wicket partnership, which got the visitors 91 runs between Marlon Samuels and Darren Bravo. Darren Sammy's side never found rhythm in 78 overs they played because of disciplined bowling and tight fielding from the home team.
Resisting initial slide with 2 for 47 inside first hour, West Indies at times looked for going to play a big innings and were 107/2 at lunch with stubborn batting from Samuels and Bravo.
But the drama unfolded after lunch as the visitors from 107/2 at lunch, conceded five more wickets collecting only 85 runs before tea, which saw Sachin Tendulkar held Shane Shillingford LBW on his fourth ball. It was Sachin's 46 wicket in 199 Test matches.
Skipper MS Dhoni, who in the pre-match comment said they were looking for series win, got Tendulkar dramatically in the last over before tea. The batting legend, who ended with one wicket in two overs, including a maiden, got Shillingford before the stumps wicket by a googly on his fourth delivery. Shivnarine Chanderpaul on the other end with 23 looked in awe at the turn of Tendulkar's bowling.
After the lunch wickets came very quickly as Dhoni judiciously rotated his specialist four bowlers-pacers B Kumar, Shami, and spinners Pragyan Ojha and R Ashwin.
Ojha was unlucky not to have an early wicket when Samuels was dropped by Dhoni. Samuels got a life on 60, but he could not go much and added only 5 runs before getting out to Shami. The Indian pacer came for the first time in Test in place of Ishant Sharma.
Shami uprooted Samuels middle wicket by an in-swinger on 65, his first victim in post lunch period and the second after first victim Kieren Powell.
Samuels (65), who was the highest run getter for the tourists, fell to his knees after ball hit his castle, seemed could not fathom line and length of the right handed bowler. He hit 11 fours and two above the fence in his 98-ball knock.
Then Darren Bravo got run out (23) in haste while seeing his new partner Chanderpaul was unmoved to other end after hitting Ashwin.
Before returning to his crease, Shami got to the ball quickly from short fine leg to wicket-keeper Dhoni, who did the rest.
Denesh Ramdin (4)even before could make himself bodily warm up was beaten by a reverse swinger off Shami, who ended the day with four wickets in 71 runs in 17 overs.
The 23-year-old local pacer was also given a fitting honour leading Indian side after bowling out West Indies for 234 in 78 overs. Of the four wickets, Shami bowled three of them.
Ashwin emerged second highest wicket taker with two. B Kumar and Ojha shared one each in the haul.
Chanderpaul, who made 112 in the warm up match against UP XI, was also got out at 36 when he missed line of Ashwin.
Eden pitch is always unpredictable because of its nature. Darren Sammy had hoped to get some runs by batting first but bowlers had the last laugh.
Even after losing toss Dhoni said he would have also elected to to bat first had won the spin of coin.
Eden had also half empty on the first day as most of the fans want to see Sachn Tendulkar's batting.
(Posted on 06-11-2013)