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- Saturday 02, April-2005
Shivnarine Chanderpaul has quickly wiped away the pain
of the sponsor row which threatened the future of West Indies cricket
with an unbeaten double-century yesterday.
All of Guyana erupted in delight when Chanderpaul reached his first Test double-hundred. The 30-year-old left-hander, playing his 81st match, raised both arms in triumph on attaining the treasured milestone that took West Indies to 543 for five declared.
Compliments of the Nation News
Ten minutes after the second day of the first Digicel Test, someone from Cape Town called the media centre here to ask what the close of play position was.
The joke is on you, the person at this end told him.
Having spent the better part of the past two days flying from the Caribbean to South Africa, the caller didn’t even know what had transpired on the opening day. When he realised this was no joke, he was left in stunned silence.
Truth be told, those of us who have watched every ball are still trying to finding it hard to believe.
For the second day running, a West Indies team, denied the cream of their batting strength because of an ongoing dispute, ground South Africa into the ground on a day when a host of significant landmarks were achieved.
The most notable was the attainment of double-centuries by new captain Shivnarine Chanderpaul and Wavell Hinds to provide only the second instance in 416 Test matches that two West Indians passed 200 in the same innings.
The only other occurrence was in 1958 – Garfield Sobers, with his world record unbeaten 365, and Conrad Hunte, run out for 260 against Pakistan at Sabina Park .
Hinds came to the treasured milestone half-hour into the morning session, and Chanderpaul, once more showing the value of concentration, deft touches and the ability to pounce on loose balls, joined him just before five o’clock when the ground was abuzz with a cacophony of noises in celebration of the monumental accomplishment.
Chanderpaul, 102 at the start of the day which was delayed by an hour because of early morning rain, turned his 369th ball to mid-wicket to raise his 23rd boundary and his 203rd run. He immediately saluted his adoring fans, kissed the turf in his customary fashion and promptly declared the innings after South Africa had been subjected to hard labour of 152.1 overs.
It was a declaration that surprised some beyond the boundary, bearing in mind that the light was quickly fading. As it turned out, South Africa only faced two balls out of the 16 overs they were supposed to before they were given the option to go off at 5:08 p.m.
“If I knew that light would have played a part this evening, I probably would have batted on a little more,” Chanderpaul said.
As a hero in this part of the world, none of his fellow Guyanese would fault the timing of his declaration which was probably delayed by a check in the scoring at a time when West Indies would have been hoping to accelerate.
“We were probably a bit late in what we were planning. How it panned out, I left it to the captain who was on the field and he made the decision,” said coach Bennett King.
“The game was just dragging along. I thought we needed to be looking to score [faster]”
At the start of the day, Chanderpaul and Hinds extended their record fourth-wicket stand to 284, before Hinds, who resumed on 188, edged a loose drive from Charl Langeveldt to give the fast medium bowler a deserved wicket for his perseverance.
It was a wonderful partnership, the best for any wicket by West Indies against South Africa, and it won’t be surprising if a few commercial entities come forward to offer the pair lucrative personal endorsement deals.
“It’s a joy playing at home, first game as captain. It’s a pleasure to really go out there and get a hundred in front of your home crowd,” Chanderpaul said.
Throughout the day, the record books were constantly updated.
Hinds’ 213 that lasted seven-and-a-quarter hours and included 34 fours and two sixes off 297 balls, was a career-best effort, and the highest score by a West Indian against South Africa in 16 Tests, surpassing Brian Lara’s 202 at The Wanderers in 2003.
When Chanderpaul moved to 141, he eclipsed his highest score which was made against India at this very ground three years ago and the same run equalled the West Indies’ previous highest score of 427 against South Africa.
His double-century was also the first by a West Indies captain in his first match in charge.
“I wasn’t worrying about highest score or whatever, or whoever got this or that. We were looking at the team,” Chanderpaul said.
After Wavell Hinds was dismissed 20 minutes after lunch, the other Hinds, Ryan, joined his captain in a fifth-wicket stand of 116 that further frustrated South Africa, who were much more disciplined in their bowling than on the opening day when West Indies closed on 347 for three.
Ryan, typically solid and attractive, was in sight of a half-century when he edged a drive off Nicky Boje’s left-arm spin to give a slip catch when he was 48. It was a disappointing end to an innings in which he stroked six fours, faced 121 balls and stayed with Chanderpaul for two-and-a-half-hours.
Narsingh Deonarine, on debut, also looked comfortable in the hour he spent with his lookalike. With similar characteristics and mannerisms to Chanderpaul, it was clear on occasions that those in the stands sometimes couldn’t tell the difference between the left-handed batsmen.
WEST INDIES 1st Innings
WW Hinds c wk Boucher b Langeveldt 213
(439 mins, 297 balls, 34x4, 2x6)
D.S. Smith c wk Boucher b Nel 11
(21 mins, 10 balls, 2x4)
D. Ganga c wk Boucher b Nel 0
(4 mins, 5 balls)
D.J. Pagon c Kallis b Nel 35
(106 mins, 72 balls)
*S. Chanderpaul not out 203
(511 mins, 369 balls, 23x4)
R.O. Hinds c Kallis b Boje 48
(146 mins, 121 balls, 6x4)
N. Deonarine not out 15
(58 mins, 47 balls, 1x4)
Extras (lb8, w2, nb8) 18
TOTAL (5 wkts dec’d – 152.1 overs) 543
Fall of wickets: 1-24 (Smith), 2-24 ( Ganga), 3-106 (Pagon), 4-390 (W Hinds), 5-506 (R Hinds).
Bowling: Ntini 23-5-98-0 (nb4), Nel33-8-93-3 (nb1), Langeveldt 27-5-65-1 (w1, nb 2)Hall 16-4-53-0 (nb1), Kallis 14-3-70-0, (w1), Boje 29.1-2-106-1, Smith 10-0-50-0.
SOUTH AFRICA 1 st Innings
A.B. de Villiers not out 0
Extras (nb1) 1
TOTAL (no wkt – 0.1 Overs) 2
To bat: J.A. Rudolph, J.H. Kallis, H.H. Gibbs, +MV Boucher, AJ Hall, N Boje, M Ntini,C.K. Langeveldt, A. Nel.
Bowling: Collins 0.1-0-2-0 (nb1).
Umpires: David Shepherd ( England), Aleem Dar ( Pakistan ). TV replays: Eddie Nicholls ( Guyana ).
Match referee: Jeff Crowe ( New Zealand).
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