Antigua, July 24 (IANS) The West Indies continued their battle in the first cricket Test against India as they reached 76/2 in their second innings during the rain-shortened morning session of the fourth day here on Sunday.
Opening batsman Rajendra Chandrika (22 not out) and veteran Marlon Samuels (39 not out) forged an undefeated 55-run stand following the dismissal of Darren Bravo (10) early in the morning.
The match was halted due to rain half an hour before the end of the first session, forcing an early lunch, as the West Indies, who were on Saturday bowled out for 243 in their first essay, were battling to avert an innings defeat — still trailing by 247 runs.
Resuming the day at 21/1, the West Indies received a big blow in the first over of the day when left-handed overnight batsman Bravo edged an away-moving delivery from pacer Umesh Yadav to wide third slip fielder Ajinky Rahane, who dived low to his left to pluck a brilliant catch.
It was just the start the Virat Kohli-led visitors wanted and the wicket further boosted their confidence.
However, the home batting duo of Chandrika and Samuels came out with strong resistance to deny India any more wickets at the Sir Vivian Richards stadium.
While Chandrika was all about doggedness and determination as he played 84 deliveries for 22 not out, Samuels, 35, showed the way for the West Indies with attacking intent.
Samuels took the attack to the opposition and hit nine fours among the 51 deliveries he faced so far.
Indian pacer Ishant Sharma tested him early with rising deliveries but he fended them with determination — twice spanking them through the covers for fours.
Indian bowlers also made the fault of bowling much outside the off stump as Samuels and Chandrika found them comfortable.
Samuels cotnied with an off-drive and a punch towards the covers of Mohammed Shami and latter punished off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin for three fours in a single over, making best use of experience and feet movement.
Brief scores: India: 566/8d; West Indies: 243 and 76/2 (Marlon Samuels 39 not out; Ishant Sharma 1/17).