After losing the Kingston’s first test by 186 runs, West Indies came back strongly in the second at Port of Spain, Trinidad. Despite the 10 wicket win, the captain Ramdin was not happy with his players. After taking eight New Zealand second innings wicket for 212, the bowlers and fielders allowed the ninth wicket pair of Mark Craig and BJ Watling to add 99 runs and another 20 for tenth wicket. Ramdin blamed his players for being soft on the field. Ramdin said that fielders lacked hunger and didn’t attempt to close the test match earlier. In addition, Ramdin rued poor catching by the butter-fingered West Indians. Regardless, the victory for the West Indies was a good turnaround after 5 losses and a drawn game. As for New Zealand, the defeat snapped their streak of eight successive test match victories but they had the consolation of making West Indies toil in the end.
On day one, June 16, 2014, New Zealand won the toss and elected to bat. Though they lost Rutherford early, the second wicket pair of Tom Latham and Kane Williamson batted with authority and carried the score to 120 before Williamson fell for 42. Ross Taylor was next and he looked as solid as ever. Just as McCullum’s decision of batting appeared justified, West Indies bowlers began to dominate the later order batsmen. Latham and McCullum fell as the third and fourth wicket. With 162/4 on the board, Ross Taylor played with nonchalance at one end but he watched helplessly as the Kiwi batsmen made a beeline in sacrificing their wicket on the other side. Jimmy Neesham was out for 15; Watling and Sodhi went for ducks; Tim Southee scored 10; Mark Craig made 4 and the last man Trent Boult made 1. With 15 extras in the innings, the New Zealand were all out for 221 in 74.4 overs. In a poor display, New Zealand lost the last nine wickets for just 101 runs thanks largely to the West Indies bowlers, despite many dropped chances. Jerome Taylor was the pick of the West Indies bowler returning with figures of 17-5-34-4. Sulieman Benn bowled 28.4 overs and took 3 wickets for 73, while Shannon Gabriel got 2 for 43.
With just 30 minutes play left on the first day, West Indies began by losing Chris Gayle for just 1 run in the third over as he couldn’t defend the last ball of Trent Boult’s second over that uprooted his off stump. West Indies sent Sulieman Benn as the night watchman, who did well to defend 8 balls without scoring on day one. On the next morning, Benn was bowled by Southee. Kirk Edwards and Brathwaite batted solidly to take the score to 109, before Edwards fell to Sodhi for a well-compiled 55. The well-set Brathwaite and new man Darren Bravo began dictating terms in building up a big fourth wicket stand. Bravo got out for 109 off 155 balls, West Indies had reached 291/4. Veteran Chanderpaul joined Brathwaite and made a useful 47 runs. In the meanwhile Brathwaite also completed a well-deserved century. With creditable contributions from Blackwood and Ramdin, West Indies finished the first innings on 460, a lead of 239 on the first innings over the Kiwis.
Brendon McCullum opened New Zealand’s second innings with Latham but he fell for 3 off 17 balls as the first wicket for 9 runs. Latham and Williamson steadied the boat and added 75 for the second wicket. But once Latham and Williamson got out, the rot set in once again. Though Taylor added 36 runs, other batsmen couldn’t settle down and the New Zealand lost 8 wickets for 212 runs with prospects of an innings defeat before play ended on day 4. But in a tenacious display, Watling and Craig defied odds and denied West Indies. They succeeded in taking the match to the last day and added 99-runs for the ninth wicket. When the second innings ended before lunch on day 5, New Zealand had reached 331, leaving a 93 run victory target for the West Indies.
Though chasing a small total can be tricky at times, Gayle had ideas of his own, when he went out to open with Brathwaite. Gayle assumed his murderous T20 approach and began with a four to Southee’s first ball. Once Gayle found his bearings, there was no stopping him. He blasted Boult for 3 sixes in over no. 6, which went for 20 runs and then took 17 runs off a Sodhi over including 2 more sixes. In full cry, Gayle took West Indies to a 10-wicket victory with a personal score of 80 off 46 balls.
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