Pakistan 357 West Indies 509-5: Lara feasts on Pakistan with century before lunchtime

Click to follow
The Independent Online

Brian Lara hit an unbeaten 196 as West Indies took control of the second Test against Pakistan on the third day here. Lara's men reached stumps with a lead of 152 over the home team.

Lara became only the fifth man in history to hit a century before lunch, reaching three figures off just 77 deliveries - the ninth quickest of all time. The captain had good support from Dwayne Bravo (89), who departed shortly before the close, the pair amassing a fifth-wicket stand of 200.

Resuming the final session on 424 for 4, Lara continued to dominate and the pair put on a further 78 before Bravo tried to defend a spinning Danish Kaneria delivery, and succeeded only in edging the ball to Younis Khan at slip.

Earlier, resuming on their overnight 151 without loss, the West Indies lost Chris Gayle as he added just six runs to his overnight score and was out for 93, when Kaneria trapped him plumb in front with a flat, spinning delivery. Daren Ganga and Lara then put on 58 for the second wicket, before the former was dismissed in identical fashion to Gayle, trapped leg before wicket by Kaneria for 82.

Runako Morton joined his captain and they put on 61 in just under seven overs. Lara did the bulk of the scoring, with Morton contributing just five before he was trapped leg before by Umar Gul. Shivnarine Chanderpaul followed soon after for 14, as he tried to blaze Shahid Nazir through midwicket, but mis-hit to Abdul Razzaq at mid-on.

However, the morning belonged to Lara, as he took the fight to the Pakistan bowlers, especially Kaneria, smacking 12 fours and five sixes, including one over for 26 runs (three sixes and two fours), shortly before lunch.

His century was his 34th in Test cricket, equal with the Indian batting legend Sunil Gavaskar and one behind Sachin Tendulkar.