Roston Chase rues Windies’ lapses in the field

After claiming three quick wickets at a point during India’s innings, Windies missed a chance of gaining an upper hand in the second Test; according to Chase, fielding lapses are to blame.

Roston Chase was pleased at scoring his century that helped Windies ensure a total of 311 in the first innings.   -  K. R. Deepak

Roston Chase, on Saturday, struck his fourth international Test hundred — his second against India — as West Indies folded for a competitive 311 in the first innings of the second Test here. His footwork and shot selection, given the struggle of his other team-mates, was commendable. The No. 6 batsman made good use of his reach to smother whatever little turn the flat Hyderabad wicket had to offer.

Chase said he was “pleased” with his performance and explained how he went about getting those runs against an opposition that is fielding three quality spinners in R. Ashwin, Kuldeep Yadav and Ravindra Jadeja.

“I thought that I was trying to overhit the ball in both innings of the first game. On this quick outfield, that's not really called for,” Chase said. “You just have to stroke the ball into the gaps and look for the ones and twos. It was my first century away from home, so it was quite special,” he added.

Double-edged sword

Asked if the aggressive nature of young Indian opener Prithvi Shaw gave Windies more chances at getting him out, Chase said, “It works both ways. When he (Shaw) is going like that, the score is ticking over so that is putting us under pressure. But he is also giving us a chance to pick his wicket.”

He further elaborated, “I would say the young (Prithvi) Shaw plays an attacking role for the Indian team. They want him to give them a good start, and the other mature guys just come and knock around the ones and twos. That is their strategy. They're going all out up front with the young guy because that is his natural game and it would be easier for the other guys coming in after him.”

IND v WI, HYDERABAD TEST: SECOND DAY REPORT

For the first time in the series, West Indies had put India under pressure. After a whirlwind start, which saw the host race to 80 for 1 in just 16 overs, it lost three wickets to go from 102 for 3 to 162 for 4. Another wicket and the visitor could have enjoyed an upper hand but Ajinkya Rahane and Rishabh Pant put up an unbeaten 146-run stand in the final session to stave off any signs of danger. Chase attributed the slip-up to Windies’ lacklustre fielding.

Fielding lapses

“We tried to contain the batsmen; we set more defensive fields to put some pressure back on them after the quick start and it paid off for us,” he said before adding, “But then there were a few lapses in the field and that cost us.”

Windies keeper Shane Dowrich was injured in the third over of the Indian innings when a Shannon Gabriel delivery bounced awkwardly and hit him flush on the kneecap. Dowrich couldn't continue after that and had to be carried off the field.

Substitute Jahmar Hamilton, donning the keeping gloves in Dowrich's absence, had a forgettable outing, having conceded a few byes and dropped Pant when he was on 24.

Chase, however, reposed faith in his team-mate. “He's (Hamilton) a good keeper; I've played a lot of cricket with him at the youth and the regional level. I know he'll pick up his game when the time is right. Not being in the game, being in the sidelines, you're not really accustomed to the pace of the match. Having been rushed to come out there, I guess, he wasn’t mentally prepared to come out there at that stage. It was his first time keeping wickets in an international match as well, so probably he was a little nervous.”

With India just three shy of the Windies' first-innings total, and Rahane and Pant looking to score freely, Chase hopes the pitch will deteriorate to bring the spinners into play. “There are bowlers running in and batsmen running on the pitch, so there will obviously be more wear and tear. Hopefully, that can work for our spinners; they can probably get some more purchase because right now it's a very good wicket to bat on.”