After a strong hold on the day one of the first test ,the Indian team stepped back into the field with the captain Kohli nearing a 150 and a possible milestone of being the first Indian captain to make a double hundred abroad. On the other end, the spin wizard of Indian cricket in it’s current state – Ashwin, who has many a times won matches single-handedly on his bowling was showing his skills with the bat – not to mention his 2 centuries in the format already.
Kumble prior to the series stressed the importance of bowlers knowing the know-hows of batting and not being a complete muck with the bat. It is with this confidence in his all-rounder Ravichandran Ashwin, that he has been promoted to bat at the position that Ganguly held for many years – the 4th down is a very critical batting position which has been handed to Ashwin.
Showing no signs of nerve and with his usual nerves of steel, the Indian captain wasted no time on day 2 and raced to his 150 – the celebration quite conserved and within the range of the stature of the performance, Kohli knew he had a much bigger task at hand – that of making his first first class double century, yes, Kohli didn’t even have a first class 200 coming into the match. First class is inclusion of domestic matches in a cricketing country, tests are just international considerations.
The ploy from the West Indian unit looked flawed and wasted against the strong duo of Kohli and Ashwin. The pacers and spinners were just not able to trouble them enough to invite an edge or two, in fact the effortlessness of taking singles and doubles, with the odd boundary was playing against the West Indies spirits – dampening any hopes of a possible revival from a huge first inning trail.
Kohli in his aggressive style raced to the nervous 190’s and was closely in-sync with the milestone ahead in front, he knew he had to play it safe – one bad shot and there goes the opportunity of a possible double. Holding onto his guns, Kohli negotiated the strike through the 190’s and just at the stroke of lunch, maneuvered a single through mid-wicket off Bishoo and reached a momentous career landmark.
Stat : It was in the last year of South African legend in Jacques Kallis’ illustrious career that he finally made a first class double hundred.
Kohli went into lunch with him exactly at 200 and when he came back, perhaps the loss of concentration resulted in his dismissal to Gabriel – a 140kmph delivery which left Kohli dragging on the ball to his wickets – departing for 200.
The innings was moved forward by Ashwin who reached to his 3rd century in test cricket and soon got out to Brathwaite for 113. Mishra and Saha played their parts and contributed respectively with 53 and 40 – taking India’s final total to 566/8 DEC.
The West Indies openers came into their first innings with just around an hour left to negotiate before stumps and as much as they would’ve liked to lose no wickets in the session, they did.
It was Chandrika who fell to Shami off 16 – leaving West Indies at 31/1 after 16, with Bishoo coming in as night watchmen.