Brathwaite carries his bat through West Indies' 337

West Indies 337 (Brathwaite 142*, Chase 50, Wahab 5-88) lead Pakistan 281 by 56 runs
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Kraigg Brathwaite brought up his fifth Test century in the first over of the day © Getty Images

Innings update: Kraigg Brathwaite became the fifth West Indies batsman to carry his bat through a Test innings with an unbeaten 142 off 318 that helped his side recover from 68 for 4 to post 337. West Indies thereby climbed up to a handy 56-run first-innings lead over Pakistan, leaving them slightly ahead in the Sharjah Test.

Devendra Bishoo, who had kept Brathwaite company in a 60-run eighth-wicket stand, was the first to depart after lunch, nicking behind off the bowling of Wahab Riaz. Wahab then accounted for Alzarri Joseph and Shannon Gabriel to wrap up the West Indies innings and claim his second five-wicket haul in Tests.

Lunch: Kraigg Brathwaite, who brought up his fifth Test century, and Devendra Bishoo, batting at No. 9, put on an unbroken eighth-wicket stand of 51 by lunch to give West Indies a 33-run lead and, with it, a chance to take charge of the Sharjah Test. West Indies added 70 runs to their overnight score, for the sole loss of captain Jason Holder, and held the edge going into the interval at 314 for 7.

Brathwaite resumed on 95 on the third morning, but he made that 99 after the very first ball of the day, helping a slightly wide delivery from Mohammad Amir between gully and point. On the fifth ball of that over, Brathwaite worked one away for a two through midwicket to bring up his century.

Brathwaite had his captain, Holder, for company at the other end. Holder started promisingly, looking solid in defence and playing a couple of sumptuous drives for four. The first, off left-armer Wahab Riaz, was a straight drive to a delivery angled into him from around the wicket. He kept his balance perfectly and timed the ball sweetly, beating mid-on to his left. The second, off Amir, was a gorgeous drive through the extra-cover region off a ball that was angled across him.

But Holder’s dismissal came immediately after that second boundary. Amir, also a left-armer, changed the angle by going around the wicket and attacking the stumps. Holder misjudged the line, shouldered arms and had his off stump rattled.

That wicket notwithstanding, neither fast bowler was able to get much from the second new ball, which had been taken immediately. After the 87th over, Zulfiqar Babar and Yasir Shah were brought on to bowl in tandem.

However, it was left-arm spinner Mohammad Nawaz, introduced in the 96th over for just his fifth over of the match, who created the next two chances – in the space of four balls. First, he got Brathwaite to attempt a cut at one that was too straight. The ball bounced more than Brathwaite had expected and he got a thin edge to wicketkeeper Sarfraz Ahmed, who fumbled it onto the grille of his helmet before it fell to ground. Then, off the last ball of the over, Bishoo swept onto his pad to Azhar Ali at short leg, but he, too, fumbled it onto the grille of his helmet before taking the catch. While Michael Gough gave it out on the field, Bishoo reviewed and third umpire Richard Illingworth spotted the infraction.

By that time, West Indies had taken the lead, and Brathwaite and Bishoo continued to build an eighth-wicket partnership that steadily extended it. Brathwaite accumulated runs in all regions of the ground. Though all but one of his boundaries came behind the wicket, perhaps owing to the slow outfield, he picked up a roughly equal number of runs in each quadrant of the field. Bishoo was more than adequate in the support he provided. The two batsmen steered their side to a decent position by lunch.

Sirish Raghavan is a sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Source: ESPN Crickinfo

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