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Tuesday 19 June 2018
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West Indies wrap up massive first Test victory

Shannon Gabriel (R) of West Indies celebrates the dismissal of Kusal Mendis (L) of Sri Lanka during day 5 of the 1st Test between West Indies and Sri Lanka at Queen’s Park Oval, Port of Spain, yesterday. (AP Photo)

UPDATE:

WEST Indies captain Jason Holder thanked the supporters for their encouragement during the first Test match, saying it went a long way in them defeating Sri Lanka by a massive 226 runs on the final day at the Queen’s Park Oval in St Clair, yesterday.

Leading up to the first Test match there were talks to boycott the three-match series. Some local supporters felt TT cricketers were not being treated fairly, and said there was a lack of transparency by Cricket West Indies in their selection process.

Hours before the first Test bowled off, on Wednesday, a handful of cricket fans led by sports and social commentator Andre Baptiste held a silent protest outside the Oval.

Cricket fans seemed to ignore the boycott, as there was an average of 600 people each day at the Oval, a typical Test crowd in recent years.

Speaking to the media after the match, Holder thanked everyone for the support at the Oval saying, “I am sure everybody is upbeat about the victory.

Everybody was very supportive of the team.

Obviously there were one or two talks of people not being interested in Test cricket and not coming out to support us, but I must say credit to the Trinidad public for supporting us over the past five days.”

Holder said the crowd, which included schoolchildren on the first three days of the match, acted as the 12th man urging the team on.

“I think the crowd support was tremendous, they really got behind us throughout the game and we fed off that energy...I have been getting a lot of calls and getting a lot of texts, and likewise the other players in the dressing room have been getting a lot of support from outside.

The guys are putting in their all, and I think the encouragement goes a very long way,” Holder said.

West Indies took a little more than a session yesterday to wrap up the comfortable win.

Resuming the last day’s play on 176 for three, Sri Lanka were dismissed for 226 in chase of a mammoth 453 to win.

Kusal Mendis, starting the day on an unbeaten 94, was dismissed for 102 off 210 deliveries when he was caught by Shane Dowrich to give fast bowler Shannon Gabriel the wicket.

His knock comprised 10 fours and one six, but Sri Lanka needed him to occupy the crease for a lot longer. After Mendis fell, Sri Lanka lost their remaining six wickets for 37 runs as they slumped from 189/4 to 226 all out.

The West Indies spinners combined to grab seven wickets in the second innings, with off spinner Roston Chase snatching four for 15 in 8.2 overs and leg spinner Devendra Bishoo taking 3/48 in 19 overs.

The spinners led the way in the second innings, after seeing the Windies quartet of fast bowlers combine for eight wickets in the first innings.

Holder credited the batsmen and bowlers for their performance, but said he would like to see some improvement in the fielding department.

“I think we could still tighten up in our fielding, but credit to the batters and bowlers. I think it was an exceptional effort to put us in the position that we were in on the first day’s play into the second (day) with the bat.

Posting a total in excess of 400 was really good,” Holder said.

West Indies were 147/5 at one stage in the first innings, before an unbeaten 125 from Dowrich led the regional team to 414/8 declared.

Holder said it was pleasing to start with a victory, as in recent years the team has been lacklustre at the start of a series.

The second Test match will bowl off on Thursday at the Darren Sammy National Cricket Stadium in St Lucia, before the third and final match bowls off on June 23 at Kensington Oval in Barbados.

ORIGINAL STORY:

WEST Indies only took a little more than a session on day five to wrap up a 226-run win over Sri Lanka in the first Test match at the Queen's Park Oval in St Clair, today.

Resuming the last day's play on 176 for three, Sri Lanka were dismissed for 226 in chase of a mammoth 453 to win. Kusal Mendis, starting the day on an unbeaten 94, was dismissed for 102 off 210 deliveries. His knock comprised 10 fours and one six, but Sri Lanka needed him to occupy the crease for a lot longer. Off spinner Roston Chase was the chief destroyer for West Indies snatching four for 15 in 8.2 overs.

The second Test match will bowl off on Thursday at the Darren Sammy National Cricket Stadium in St Lucia, before the third and final match bowls off on June 23 at Kensington Oval in Barbados.

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