We will counterattack Indian spinners: Darren Sammy

West Indies cricket captain Darren Sammy feels West Indies need to win key moments in the second Test against India in second Test AFP

Kolkata: Nov 14, 2011

The West Indies need to win key moments in the second Test against India starting at the Eden Gardens in Kolkata on Monday in a bid to bounce back in the series, skipper Darren Sammy said.

The tourists trail 1-0 in the three-Test series following their five-wicket defeat in the opening match in New Delhi despite gaining a 95-run lead on the first innings.

“It is about capitalising on key moments. Hopefully, we can do it in this Test and bounce back. We never said it would be easy coming to India. It (winning) is difficult but not impossible,” Sammy told reporters on Sunday.

The West Indies had seized the early advantage in the last Test when they dismissed India for 209 runs after posting 304 in the first innings, but failed to cash in on it and crashed to 180 in the second innings.

“Before the start of the series we had said we would play fearless cricket. Despite the result, we did control the first two days of the first Test,” said the West Indies captain.

“Had we batted better in the second innings it would have been a different ball game. We still have the belief that once we win the key moments of the game we can come back (in the series).”

The West Indies failed to cope with India’s slow bowlers in New Delhi, with debutant off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin bagging nine wickets in the Test and left-arm spinner Pragyan Ojha seven.

Shivnarine Chanderpaul was the lone batsman to defy the Indian spin attack on a low, slow turning pitch, scoring 118 and 47 in the match.

The West Indies skipper said his batsmen needed to be positive against the Indian spinners and try to occupy the crease for a long time.

“We let them (Indian spinners) dictate too much to us and it took the experience of Chanderpaul to show us how to play (spin) on that pitch. We hope to take a page out of his book,” said Sammy.

“When you are positive against spin, it is effective. The team should look to do that more often and be cautious and not go into the shell.

“We will look to counter-attack, but also be more selective because it is Test cricket. We have to be prepared to bat for long periods.”

The West Indies, who played with one spinner (Devendra Bishoo) in the last Test, could name a second spinner in their playing XI as the pitch is likely to help slow bowlers.

“The track, minus the grass, looks the same as slow practice pitches here. We will consider the option of the other

spinner (Shane Shillingford) we have in the squad,” said Sammy.”It is a wicket that will help spinners like you would expect (in India).”

Indian fast bowler Ishant Sharma also said the spinners are likely to play big roles on the Eden Gardens track.

“In India, we get wickets like this only, so we can’t complain about these pitches,” said Sharma, the most experienced bowler in the side with 125 wickets in 39 Test matches.

“Obviously, it’s a great feeling when you know that you are the most senior bowler in the Indian team.”

Ojha, Ashwin and seamer Umesh Yadav, who played in the last match, have a combined tally of only 14 Tests. (AFP)