Smith puts Australia in control

Published: Saturday 13th June 2015 by The News Editor

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Steven Smith came within a whisker of a maiden double century as his batting again ensured Australia are in a commanding position in the second Test against the West Indies.

Smith’s 199 comprised just under half of Australia’s entire first innings total, with the tourists finishing 399 all out. Fittingly, it was Jerome Taylor who ended Smith’s glorious innings painfully short of the double century, with the West Indies seamer claiming the final wicket of a stellar six for 47 turn.

The Windies’ reply never got going and they ended the day 143 for eight, 256 runs behind, as Nathan Lyon and Josh Hazlewood took three wickets apiece.

Smith picked up on 135, with the Baggy Greens on 258 for four, and before he had time to add to that personal total Shane Watson (25) was dismissed.

With skipper Michael Clarke’s 47 the closest Smith came to having a decent supporting act on the opening day there was little in the way of back-up once again as the 26-year-old virtually took on the hosts alone.

Watson was Taylor’s fourth victim of the match and he soon found another, bowling Brad Haddin (22) six overs later to leave the Australians on 296 for six.

By the time Smith worked past the 150 mark, Australia had already lost another wicket as Mitchell Johnson (five) went cheaply, and Mitchell Starc (six) followed soon after.

This was Smith’s cue to open up and he found joy against Veerasammy Permaul again, hitting two fours off him in the 114th over before hitting back-to-back boundaries off Kemar Roach shortly after.

His fine knock was ended by Taylor at the end of the 126th over as he was caught lbw and became the third Australian to be dismissed on 199 after Matthew Elliott and Steve Waugh.

Permaul claimed the last wicket as Hazlewood (24) walked to at least give him some comfort after the Australians feasted to the tune of 124 runs off his 34.5 overs.

The hosts’ reply got off to disastrous start as they slipped to 25 for three after just over 11 overs.

First Rajendra Chandrika was out for a duck on debut to Starc, then Lyon struck twice in four overs to bowl Kraigg Brathwaite (four) and catch Darren Bravo (14) lbw.

Hazlewood had Shane Dowrich (13) caught behind in the 20th over, before Lyon claimed his third victim in Shai Hope (26) to restrict the Windies to 77 for five.

Not to be outdone by Lyon, Hazlewood went on to take three for 15, adding Denesh Ramdin (eight) and Jermaine Blackwood – the only Windies batsman who put up a fight before departing for 51 – to his earlier scalp.

Johnson completed Permaul’s difficult day by getting the tail-ender out for a duck in the final act of the second day.

Published: Saturday 13th June 2015 by The News Editor

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