Waugh defies Lawson to inspire recovery

Australia 175-4 v West Indies
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The Independent Online

Striving to avoid their first whitewash in a home series, the West Indies enjoyed their best session in the field on the opening day of the fourth and final Test against Australia here yesterday.

Striving to avoid their first whitewash in a home series, the West Indies enjoyed their best session in the field on the opening day of the fourth and final Test against Australia here yesterday.

Punished for first-innings totals well in excess of 450 in their defeats in the previous three Tests, they might have anticipated more of the same when Steve Waugh won the toss and predictably chose first use of a typically inviting pitch at the Antigua Recreation Ground.

But the West Indies removed the openers Matthew Hayden and Justin Langer before lunch and Darren Lehmann and Martin Love in the first hour after the interval. They missed the chance to remove a scratchy, but ever dangerous, Waugh who was dropped at leg-slip by Shivnarine Chanderpaul at 17 off the off-spinner Omari Banks. The Australian captain, a century maker in the third Test, was unbeaten with 41 at tea with his team 175 for 4 and Adam Gilchrist 28.

On a surface with more bounce than any in the series, the fast bowler Jermaine Lawson presented problems with his pace. He induced a miscued hook from Hayden, who lobbed a catch to mid-on on 27 and, just before lunch, had Langer smartly taken by Banks for 42.

Lawson went round the wicket to snare his third wicket just after lunch, finding the left-hander Darren Lehmann's thin edge for a catch to the keeper and, when Banks bowled Martin Love off the face of a defensive bat for 38, Australia were 128 for 4.

However, Waugh gradually got through his uncertain start and, with Gilchrist as aggressive as usual, the partnership began to take control.

First day; Australia won toss

Australia; First Innings

J L Langer c Banks b Lawson 42

M L Hayden c Drakes b Lawson 14

M L Love b Banks 36

D S Lehmann c Jacobs b Lawson 7

*S R Waugh not out 41

ÝA C Gilchrist not out 28

Extras (lb2 w2 nb3) 7

Total (for 4, 53 overs) 175

Fall: 1-27 2-80

To bat: A J Bichel, B Lee, J N Gillespie, S C G MacGill, G D McGrath.

Bowling: Dillon 12-0-41-0; Lawson 16-2-63-3; Drakes 15-2-42-0; Banks 10-0-27-1.

West Indies: C H Gayle, D S Smith, D Ganga, R R Sarwan, *B C Lara, S Chanderpaul, O A C Banks, ÝR D Jacobs, V C Drakes, M Dillon, J J C Lawson.

Umpires: D R Shepherd and S Venkataraghavan.

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