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Chase hundred not enough to prevent series defeat

The trinidad Guardian / Courtesy of a magnificent unbeaten 101 from the immovable Man-of-the-Match Roston Chase, West Indies defied a ruthless but tiring Pakistan bowling attack for nearly 90 overs and appeared on the brink of a brilliant rescue effort, with seven balls left in the day at Windsor Park.

But Gabriel, who had defended purposely for just over half-hour, suffered a rush of blood and essayed a wild slog at the 22nd delivery he faced, the last of the day’s penultimate over, and was bowled by champion leg-spinner Yasir Shah for four as the Windies were dismissed for 202.

The result gave Pakistan a 2-1 win in the three-Test victory following a seven-wicket victory in the opening Test at Sabina Park in Jamaica last month, and a 106-run defeat in the second Test at Kensington Oval in Barbados earlier this month.

For the retiring veterans, captain Misbah-ul-Haq and Younis Khan, the success also provided a memorable farewell with Pakistan winning their first series since they first toured the Caribbean 59 years ago.

Chase almost proved the difference for the Windies, striking 12 fours and a six in a monumental innings which spanned 239 balls and a shade over six hours, reviving memories of his match-saving maiden Test hundred against India last year at Sabina Park.

The knock was his third hundred in his 10th Test and second of the series, following his 131 in the second Test.

Shimron Hetmyer struck a breezy 25 and captain Jason Holder chipped in with 22, but the hosts failed to cope with Yasir who claimed five for five for 92 to finish with match figures of eight for 218 and take the Man-of-the-Series honours.

He was supported by debutant seamer Hasan Ali who picked up three for 33.

Resuming the day on seven for one with the victory target of 304 purely academic, the Windies’ bid to save the match suffered a huge blow when they lost three wickets in the morning session to slump to 73 for four at lunch.

Opener Kraigg Brathwaite completed a miserable series when he perished for six in the fourth over of the day, slapping a wide delivery from Yasir to Hasan Ali at cover, at 22 for two.

Left-hander Hetmyer once again flattered to deceive, stroking a 36-ball 25 with three fours before attempting an expansive drive at left-arm seamer Mohammad Amir with the hour approaching, and losing his off-stump at 47 for three.

And 10 minutes before lunch, Shai Hope, who had spent 54 balls over 17, fell lbw to a full length delivery from Hasan Ali.

More tragedy followed for West Indies when the out-of-sorts Vishaul Singh was caught at short leg by Babar Azam off Yasir in the third over following the interval for two, wrapping up a debut international series to forget.

Wicketkeeper Shane Dowrich also perished to the combination of Azam and Yasir, 45 minutes after lunch, leaving the Windies at the crossroads at 93 for six.

Two critical partnerships then followed as Chase put on 58 for the seventh wicket with Holder and another 30 for the eighth with Devendra Bishoo who made three.

Unbeaten on 19 at lunch, Chase played with confidence and authority to reach his half-century 40 minutes before tea and was not out on 66 at the interval, with West Indies on 146 for six.

Holder, however, failed to add to his tea time 22, falling lbw to a Hasan Ali full toss in the third over on the resumption.

With Pakistan closing in for the kill, Chase was forced to ride his luck, dropped twice by Hasan Ali off return catches on 66 and 91, and then being caught off a no-ball at first slip by Asad Shafiq late in the day off Mohammad Abbas, as tensions rose.

He made the most of the chances to notch three figures late in the day, whipping Hasan Ali through mid-on for four to raise his landmark.

Bishoo lasted 45 balls before gloving Abbas to silly point and Alzarri Joseph stuck around nearly an hour for his five before edging Hasan Ali behind.

Gabriel then frustrated Pakistan with a straight bat and a cool head and steadily grew in confidence as the visitors began to show signs of panic.

But with a draw within reach, he lost his composure and with it the series.

(CMC)

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