Laxman – Raina rescue India

Bridgetown (Barbados): Laxman and Suresh Raina rescued India from an early slump, guiding them to 201 all out before the West Indies struggled to 30 for three in their first innings on the opening day of the second cricket Test here.

West Indies trailed India by 171 runs at stumps at the Kensington Oval here yesterday with Ramnaresh Sarwan batting on 10 along with night watchman Devendra Bishoo (0).

Earlier, India were left struggling at 38 for four, courtesy pacer Ravi Rampaul`s three-wicket haul in the pre-lunch session but Laxman (85) and Raina (53) added 117 runs for the fifth wicket to bring the visitors back into the game.

Laxman dropped the anchor initially and along with Raina started dominating the bowlers in the afternoon session but West Indies bounced back after tea with Fidel Edwards and Devendra Bishoo taking three wickets each.

If Rampaul (3 for 38) was incisive in the first session, Edwards (3 for 56) and Bishoo (3 for 46) were lethal in the final session as India lost their final five wickets for just 34 runs.

India did manage to get colour back on their cheeks with three strikes of their own — openers Adrian Barath (3) and Lendl Simmons (2) departed with only five runs on board and left-hander Darren Bravo (9) left with just a delivery remaining for the day`s play.

All three Indian seamers — Ishant Sharma, Praveen Kumar and Abhimanyu Mithun — picked up a wicket each as West Indies ended the day on 30 for 3.