A tale of two players rebuilding their Test careers and further proof that video evidence is not the be-all and end-all when it comes to settling controversial dismissals. India and Pakistan have each taken giant strides towards series-clinching victories over Sri Lanka and New Zealand respectively, while West Indies made a surprisingly decent start to their second Test against Australia.
Dwayne Bravo led West Indies to 336 for six on day one in Adelaide, a respectable total after the tourists had lost three wickets in the first session, including the scalps of Chris Gayle and Ramnaresh Sarwan. Bravo hit an enterprising 104 from 156 balls, his first Test ton in four years. That too came in Australia and his success there demonstrates the talent that West Indies are all too grateful to have at their disposal once more.
Bravo has been dogged by injury and, according to some, a lack of dedication to the cause – earlier this year he played in the IPL despite supposedly not being fit enough for selection for the tour to England that followed.
He was dropped three times, including twice on 46, but his good fortune did not extend to Shiv Chanderpaul, who was given out on a review request by Australia. The TV evidence was far from conclusive but he was sent on his way for 62, having survived another review that appeared more definitively out.
Mohammad Asif is playing his first series since his year ban after testing positive for nandrolone and he now has 12 wickets in one and a half Tests. He took four for 40 at Basin Reserve in Wellington yesterday as New Zealand were shot out for 99. By the close of day two Pakistan, already one up in the three-match series, were ahead by 229.
India opened an even more commanding lead in Mumbai as they push for a second victory over Sri Lanka to close out their series. India reached 726 for 9, their highest Test score and a lead of 333, but Virender Sehwag failed to become the first man to record three Test treble centuries when he was caught and bowled by Muttiah Muralitharan seven short.