CRICKET Australian spirit canes West Indies

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CRICKET

TONY COZIER

reports from Bridgetown, Barbados

West Indies 195 and 189

Australia 346 and 39-0

Australia win by 10 wickets

Meeting hardly any resistance from the West Indies batting for the second time in the match, Australia completed a resounding victory with two days to spare in the first Test here yesterday.

They out-batted, out-bowled, out-fielded and out-thought opponents who were losing at Kensington Oval for the second successive year on a ground where they had not previously been beaten since 1935. Australia took a grip on proceedings within the first half-hour of the match when they reduced the West Indies to 6 for 3.

The final day began with the West Indies 13 without loss, facing an overall deficit of 151 and an obviously harrowing Sunday. It required the kind of grit and commitment the Australian batsmen had shown throughout their innings on Saturday to raise a fight. As in the first innings, no one did - with the familiar exception of the left-handed Jimmy Adams, who, placed surprisingly low at No 6, was left high and dry, unbeaten on 39, when the innings ended at a lamentable 189 at the tea interval.

Australia's performance was characterised by outstanding fast-medium bowling by a trio with only 21 Tests between them, in support of Shane Warne's leg spin, and magnificent fielding.

The outcome was virtually settled within 40 minutes of the start as the two fledgeling openers, Sherwin Campbell and Stuart Williams, were again dismissed cheaply and Glenn McGrath produced a peach of a delivery to claim the prize wicket of Brian Lara.

McGrath drew the celebrated left-hander into a defensive stroke with a delivery perfectly pitched on off stump and moving away just enough to find the edge on its way through to the wicketkeeper Ian Healy. That left the West Indies 31 for 3 and they seemed to have lost what little stomach they had for the fight.

By lunch, Carl Hooper had driven loosely to mid-off from the left-armer Brendon Julian and the captain Richie Richardson had missed his attempted on-drive at Paul Reiffel to be bowled off the pads in the final over before the interval.

For the next hour, Adams and Junior Murray put on 44 but Murray never seemed completely at ease against Warne. He had made 23 when he tried to hit the spinner out of the ground and skied the ball into apparent open space on the leg side. Steve Waugh, stationed at midwicket, spotted the merest chance of making a catch of it, turned and ran in the direction of the boundary as the ball headed to earth over his right shoulder. At the last moment, he lunged full length forward and grasped it with both hands as he hit the ground. It was a breathtaking effort and epitomised the Australian spirit that was to bring them their first victory in Barbados.

(Third day; West Indies won toss)

WEST INDIES - First Innings 195 (B C Lara 65, C L Hooper 60; B P Julian 4-36).

AUSTRALIA - First Innings 346 (M A Taylor 55, S R Waugh 65, I A Healy 74no).

WEST INDIES - Second Innings

(Overnight: 13 for 0)

S C Williams c Healy b McGrath 10

S L Campbell c S Waugh b Warne 6

B C Lara c Healy b McGrath 9

C L Hooper c Reiffel b Julian 16

*R B Richardson b Reiffel 36

J C Adams not out 39

J R Murray c S Waugh b Warne 23

W K M Benjamin lbw b McGrath 26

C E L Ambrose c Blewett b McGrath 6

C A Walsh b McGrath 4

K C G Benjamin b Warne 5

Extras (lb1 nb8) 9

Total 189

Fall: 1-19 2-35 3-31 4-57 5-91 6-135 7-170 8-176 9-180.

Bowling: Reiffel 11-6-15-1 (3nb); Julian 12-2-41-1 (4nb); Warne 26.3- 5-64-3; McGrath 22-6-68-5 (1nb).

AUSTRALIA - Second Innings

M J Slater not out 20

*M A Taylor not out 16

Extras (nb3) 3

Total 39

Bowling: Walsh 3-0-19-0 (1nb); K Benjamin 2.5-1-14-0 (2nb); Hooper 1- 0-6-0.

Umpires: L Barker and S Venkataraghavan (Ind).

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