Cricket: Hooper holds the fort

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West Indies 344-9

v Pakistan

CARL HOOPER hit an unbeaten 116 as the West Indies struggled to 344 for 9 on the opening day of the final Test against Pakistan here. The Kent batsman shared half-century stands with Keith Arthurton and Anderson Cummins as the home team, who hold an unassailable 2-0 lead in the series, failed to capitalise on a promising start.

The West Indies lost each of their first four batsmen by mid-afternoon to careless strokes before Hooper and Arthurton led the recovery to 213 for 4 at tea.

Desmond Haynes and Phil Simmons rattled up 35 from the first 10 overs as neither Wasim Akram nor Waqar Younis could make much impact with the new ball. Ata-ur-Rahman then came on and his second ball was driven by Simmons into mid-on's lap.

Naddem Khan replaced Waqar the following over, and he was eventually rewarded with the wickets of Haynes and Brian Lara, who added 76 for the third wicket with the captain, Richie Richardson.

Pakistan owed their fightback in the final session to a customary late burst with the old ball by Waqar, who trapped Arthurton, Junior Murray and Cummins lbw on his way to figures to 5 for 86.

(First day: West Indies won toss)

WEST INDIES - First Innings

D L Haynes c Latif b Nadeem23

P V Simmons c Wasim b Ata-ur-Rehman28

* R B Richardson c Wasim b Waqar52

B C Lara st Latif b Nadeem44

K L T Arthurton lbw b Waqar30

C L Hooper not out116

J R Murray lbw b Waqar4

C E L Ambrose lbw b Wasim1

A C Cummins lbw b Waqar14

W K M Benjamin c Wasim b Waqar12

C A Walsh not out0

Extras (lb6 nb14)20

Total (for 9, at close)344

Fall: 1-35 2-77 3-153 4-159 5-218 6-241 7-252 8-312 9-332.

Bowling (to date): Wasim 21-5-72-1 (3nb); Waqar

22-4-86-5; Ata-ur-Rehman 14-1-58-1 (7nb); Nadeem

33-5-122-2 (4nb).

PAKISTAN: * Wasim Akram, Ramiz Raja, Shakeel Ahmed, Asif Mujtaba, Basit Ali, Javed Miandad, Inzamam-ul-Haq, Rashid Latif, Waqar Younis, Nadeem Khan, Ata-ur-Rehman.

Umpires: H D Bird and S U Bucknor.