The Jamaica Gleaner
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West Indies v Border

Tony Becca in The Jamaica Gleaner
4-6 December 1998

Day 2: Windies batsmen demolish Nitini

EAST LONDON - Akhaya Nitini's hope of winning a place in South Africa's team for the second Test against the West Indies was all but destroyed at Buffalo Park today.

The tourists, paced by a dashing innings of 92 by Shivnarine Chanderpaul, chipped to 356 in reply to Border's 282 for nine declared in the second day of the three-day tour match.

At stumps, Border were 21 without loss off six overs in their second innings.

With black South Africa shouting for his selection and the United Cricket Board of South Africa apparently in favour, all the 21-year-old Nitini needed to do was to present the selectors with a good analysis against the tourists.

That, however, was not to be. The fast bowler, whose action reminds of England's Dominican-born Phil Defreitas, bowled fast, really fast. Apart from Stuart Williams, who edged to second slip, captain Brian Lara, who was hit in the chest by the first ball he received and Rawl Lewis who drove and also edged to first slip to end the West Indies innings, his speed, however, had little effect on the West Indians who caned him for 84 runs off 15 overs before he returned with the second new ball to pick up one for one in 1.5 overs.

The batsmen who did most of the whipping were big Philo Wallace, who slammed one six and nine fours while scoring 68 off 78 deliveries, and Chanderpaul whose stroke-filled innings lasted for 129 deliveries and included 15 boundaries.

Wallace, resuming on 22, beat the pacer mercilessly, his powerful strokes including a drive high to the midwicket boundary, one over long-on for six, a hook to the midwicket and a flick backward of square-leg.

Chanderpaul, who treated all bowlers with scant respect while entertaining the small gathering with perfectly-timed strokes all round the wicket, off the back foot and off the front foot, was also particularly severe on Nitini.

After standing and watching Nitini cut down Williams and, with the following delivery, greeting Lara with a nasty kicker, the left-hander went for him, and in two overs stroked six boundaries - a drive to long-off, a square-cut, a drive through midwicket, a drive through extra-cover, a hook to midwicket and a delicate steer to third man.

For the West Indians, however, the Border match was not to deal with Nitini.

Apart from a tune-up for the second Test, it was to solve the problematic number six position, but although they both played some handsome strokes, neither Darren Ganga, 27, nor Floyd Reifer, 36, used the opportunity to force out Williams who, batting behind them at six, managed only two runs.

Ganga, batting at number three and replacing Clayton Lambert, who swept at offspinner Peter Emslie, top-edged a catch to Brad White at leg gully and left for 33 at 106 for one, played one good hook off medium-pacer Burton Forbes, two lovely offside drives off Emslie and looked composed before he plodded forward to Emslie, gloved a catch to Wayne Wiblin at forward short-leg and went away at 154 for three.

Day 3: Border flay West Indies attack

EAST LONDON: Unlike the warm sunshine of the first two days, the third and final day of the match between the touring West Indian cricketers and Border at Buffalo Park was nice and cool - a blessing for the visiting fielders who spent the day chasing leather.

In a performance worse than that of the opening morning when Border skipped to 103 without loss before lunch, the West Indians, without pacer Franklyn Rose who is nursing an injured heel, bowled far too short, gave the batsmen too much width, and were ripped to pieces by cuts, pulls and hooks as Border enjoyed themselves while posting a second innings total of 340 for eight before the game was called off with just under 12 overs to go.

Score in the drawn match, Border 282 for nine declared and 340 for eight with Wayne Wiblin on 101 not out, the West Indies 356.

Resuming at 21 without loss off six overs with Craig Sugden on 11 and Brad White on 10, the home team set the tone for the day when the left-handed White drove the first delivery from pacer Nixon McLean, off the backfoot, to the cover boundary and although he was on the way three deliveries later - caught by substitute wicketkeeper Junior Murray for 14 at 25 for one, it was licks from there on.

On a day during which the batsmen of Border, led by Sugden and Mark Boucher, who rattled up a second-wicket partnership of 163 in 42 overs, and Wiblin and captain Pieter Strydom, who chipped in with a fourth-wicket stand of 87 in 16 overs, smashed five sixes and 41 fours to all parts of the field, the West Indian bowlers, but for a brief interlude in mid afternoon when they picked up two wickets in two overs, never looked like getting a wicket until minutes before tea when the batsmen started to hit at almost every delivery.

That however, only showed up another weakness as wicketkeeper Murray failed to catch Wiblin when the batsman, on 32 at 240 for three, stabbed at a good delivery from right-arm legspinner Rawl Lewis, and to stump the same batsmen, when on 85 at 315 for six, Wiblin went way down the pitch to right-arm legspinner Shivnarine Chanderpaul, aimed a big drive, and missed a tempting, flighted delivery.

Following on his first innings 76, Sudgen hit two sixes - one off medium-pacer Clayton Lambert and one off Lewis - and nine fours while scoring 84 off 165 deliveries before he miscued a hook off Mervyn Dillon and was caught off Floyd Reifer at midwicket at 188 for two.

In the following over, Boucher, who scored only five in the first innings, was legbefore wicket to Lewis for 84 at 188 for three after striking one six - off Lewis - and 13 fours in an innings which lasted for 114 deliveries.

The batsman who really blasted the Windies bowling, however, was Wiblin. Joining the action at 188 for two, Wiblin, who stepped to his century with successive boundaries off Dillon - a high drive to long-on and a square-cut, hit one six and 14 fours in an innings during which he faced only 103 deliveries while batting for 139 minutes.

Source: The Jamaica Gleaner