It’s safe to say now that the gap between teams in this series is not a matter of conditions, but rather the difference is more about discipline and doing the basic things needed at the highest level, especially when it’s needed most. The hosts took a late lead, scoring four wickets, but by then had allowed India to set the pace for the second Test. The tourists had already reached a score that the hosts had not managed in the first two innings of the series. Rohit Sharma fell short of his hundred by 20 runs and Yashasvi Jaiswal scored a fifty to lead India, but India will be worried about the form of Ajinkya Rahane and Shubman Gill as both fell on the cheap. However, after a superb middle session, West Indies never managed to break through to the Indian line-up, resulting in Rohit and Co. winning the day.
Kohli will surely deserve credit for the rebuilding job done, but Jadeja’s role cannot be unrecognized. He has come to the rescue so often in similar situations that it is no longer surprising now.
A familiar story
While in Dominica the West Indies played into the visitors’ hands by preparing a dry and dusty pitch, in Trinidad it was expected that the surface would be more to the liking of their fast bowlers. Craig Brathwaite won the toss and was hoping that the early life and movement on the Queen’s Park Oval track would bring some joy, but the length and line required was missing. First Jaiswal and Rohit Sharma, but behind the good ones. especially if the ball is angled towards him and the West Indians tried to feed his urge to bat in that area. That ploy didn’t work in the first session as Jaiswal reached his fifty off just 49 balls and the pair set their second consecutive century in as many outings.
The final score of 121 for no loss by lunch showed that Brathwaite’s decision at the toss had not paid off.
Going into the second match, West Indies looked much better.That makes him a reliable bowler for his captain and he can field good players if he manages to pay off the surface a bit.
Rohit’s exit brought the pressurized Rahane onto the field and the match became much more tense than the Dominican stage. Rahane, probably playing for his place in the lineup, was understandably cautious in trying to play out the rest of the session alongside Kohli. But that didn’t help the Mumbaikar as Gabriel bowled him out in-dipper at tea time, making just 8 runs. After making just three runs in the previous game, Rahane is hopeful that the second innings in Trinidad will save his career.
Kohli, who was restless in Dominica as well, survived on at least two occasions, survived 20 dot balls before Joseph’s direct drive brought him his first runs, followed by a vintage cover drive for a boundary. It was undoubtedly the best session played by the home team on the field throughout the series, but after tea they couldn’t rake it in