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West Indies vs Pakistan 2nd Test Preview: Runs at a premium in challenging batting conditions

Kraigg Brathwaite
Kraigg Brathwaite

West Indies vs Pakistan 2nd Test Preview: Runs at a premium in challenging batting conditions

LIVE SCORES - West Indies vs Pakistan 2nd Test 

There is a likelihood of both teams adding an extra pacer in their XI in bowling-friendly conditions.

Marker laid

The fans got to see a cracker of a Test match as the two teams met for the series opener at the Sabina Park in Kingston where West Indies were able to eke out a victory by just one wicket. More than anything, Pakistan would be disappointed with their fielding effort as the two catches they dropped in the final session ultimately led to their defeat.

That said, with Pakistan being the favourites going into the series, it has set up the second and the final Test match beautifully. The conditions at Kingston will remain bowling friendly with the pitch and the conditions providing a lot of assistance to the pace bowlers.

It will not be easy to spend time at the wicket for batsmen, let alone scoring runs given the excessive movement and the slow outfield. The weather in Jamaica for this Test match is expected to be overcast as well. The first day will be mostly cloudy with showers expected on days 2, 3 and 4.

Time to go all pace

Given the quality of the pace bowling attacks of both sides - Mohammad Abbas, Shaheen Afridi, Hasan Ali and Faheem Ashraf for Pakistan and Jason Holder, Kemar Roach and Jayden Seales for West Indies - it should make for another cracking Test.

The spinners in both the teams did not have much to do in the match and both teams might reconsider the utility of Yasir Shah and Jomel Warrican in their lineups. While Pakistan will consider bringing in Naseem Shah into their playing XI, West Indies have an excellent option in Alzarri Joseph or even Chemar Holder to replace Warrican.


Batters need to stand up in tough conditions

The first Test match proved to be a low-scoring affair. Matches where 500 meets 550 are frankly far too boring and the games which have scores of between 200 and 300 generally end up being exciting contests.

Pakistan batted first after West Indies won the toss and opted to bowl in the first Test match. As expected, the Pakistan top order departed cheaply in tough batting conditions. Babar Azam did well to make 30 but it was the contribution of Fawad Alam 56, Mohammad Rizwan 23 and Faheem Ashraf 44 that took Pakistan to over 200.

Jayden Seales and Jason Holder were on point with the ball and picked up three wickets each. Kraigg Brathwaite put in an exceptional performance, finally getting run out for 97 of 221 deliveries, specially given that both Kieran Powell and Nkrumah Bonner departed for ducks.

Jason Holder also made a valuable contribution of 58 as West Indies were successful in clinching an all-important lead in the first innings. Mohammad Abbas and Shaheen Afridi were the leading bowlers for Pakistan.

Pakistan then did enough to stay in the game with contributions from Abid Ali, Azhar Ali, Mohammad Rizwan, Faheem Ashraf and Hasan Ali. Babar Azam was the top scorer in the second innings with 55 off 160 deliveries.

Jayden Seales is rising to the West Indies ranks quite swiftly. He made the best of his opportunity in the absence of Shannon Gabriel, picking a 5 wicket haul in the second innings while Kemar Roach took three.

By the barest of margins

West Indies were struggling at 16/3 in the chase but a partnership between Roston Chase and Jermaine Blackwood put them back in the match. They were almost out of the game at 114/7 but Kemar Roach stood firm with an unbeaten 30 off 52 deliveries and with some support from Jayden Seales, he was successful in taking West Indies across the line.

While Mohammad Abbas would consider himself unfortunate to finish wicketless in the final innings, Afridi and Hasan Ali shared 7 wickets between them.

Another low scoring match is expected in the second Test, with both teams likely to opt for an extra quick ahead of a spinner.

Predicted playing XIs:

West Indies
- Kraigg Brathwaite (c), Kieran Powell, Nkrumah Bonner, Kyle Mayers, Roston Chase, Jermaine Blackwood, Joshua Da Silva (wk), Jason Holder, Kemar Roach, Alzarri Joseph, Jayden Seales

Pakistan - Abid Ali, Imran Butt, Azhar Ali, Babar Azam (c), Fawad Alam, Mohammad Rizwan (wk), Faheem Ashraf, Naseem Shah, Hasan Ali, Mohammad Abbas, Shaheen Afridi

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