Spinners shining for the West Indies is not entirely about a past when the great Lance Gibbs spun his off-breaks till 1976. And in a drastic turnaround, it was the West Indies ‘A’ spinners — Veerasammy Permaul (five for 85) and Nikita Miller (four for 61) — who dominated the Gangothri Glades ground here on Friday during the course of the four-day game against India ‘A’.
The Windies left-arm spin duo bowled out India ‘A’ for 245 in its first innings. The resultant 184-run lead found further increments as captain Kirk Edwards refused to enforce the follow-on and the West Indies ‘A’ second innings rocketed through Kieran Powell’s 68 that whipped up decisive footwork and scintillating shots.
Eventually, Powell was consumed by a brilliant caught and bowled effort by Rajat Paliwal. Fellow opener Kraigg Brathwaite and Narsingh Deonarine also retreated behind Powell, but the West Indies had already posted a second innings score of 130 for three and nursed an unfinished lead of 314.
A declaration is imminent and India ‘A’ will have a steep chase on Saturday.
Earlier, India ‘A’ chugged on from the overnight 124 for three as Manpreet Juneja (84, 151b, 11x4) and Harshad Khadiwale shared a 75-run fourth-wicket partnership.
Juneja flexed a few off his hips and drove with aplomb, while an air of predictability hung heavy as Miller bowled unchanged from the Hunsur Road End. The skies remained a deep blue, a kite swooped low, Chamundi Hill loomed in the background, dragon-flies circled the outfield and the Indians dropped anchor. The pastoral setting was suddenly ruined when before lunch, India ‘A’ lost three wickets for a mere three runs. Permaul trapped Juneja and Miller found extra grip as Paliwal and Khadiwale poked and perished to leave Edwards’ men sitting pretty on the penultimate day.