Pakistan edge closer to West Indies Test victory

Kingston (Jamaica) (AFP) –


Pakistan snared four wickets in an extended morning session to increase their chances of a series-levelling victory with the West Indies struggling at 113 for five at lunch on the last day of the second and final Test at Sabina Park on Tuesday.

At this stage, a winning target of 329 for the Caribbean side looks completely out of the reckoning despite captain Kraigg Brathwaite battling to hold firm with wickets tumbling around him.

Brathwaite, who will resume in the afternoon on 39 in partnership with Kyle Mayers, was lucky not be another victim of the disciplined Pakistan bowling attack as he was badly missed by Abid Ali at first slip off seamer Faheem Ashraf's first over when on 25.

Before that though considerable damage had already been done to the West Indies chances of survival on a day when a draw will be enough to give them a first Test series win over Pakistan for 21 years.

Shaheen Shah Afridi, the home side's tormentor through this brief campaign, triggered the clatter of wickets when nightwatchman Alzarri Joseph top-edged an attempted pull after half-hour's play for wicketkeeper Mohammad Rizwan to take a comfortable catch.

After taking eight wickets in the agonising one-wicket loss in the first Test at the same venue and Test-best six for 51 in the first innings of this encounter, the 21-year-old left-arm fast bowler now has 15 wickets in the campaign with the prospect of a few more to come before this day is over.

Nkrumah Bonner was soon trapped leg-before by Hasan Ali and following Abid's inexplicable miss, his opening partner, Imran Butt, reinforced his reputation as the safest pair of hands in the Pakistan team, holding on to Roston Chase’s edged drive off Hasan diving to his right at second slip.

Jermaine Blackwood looked capable of reaching the interval with his captain but left-arm spinner Nauman Ali accounted for him for 25 just before the break, a perfectly pitched delivery drawing the right-hander forward for Rizwan to take the catch off a thin edge.