Skipper Holder hails brave Bravo after Test defeat
DUBAI, UAE (CMC):
Captain Jason Holder has hailed Darren Bravo's eighth Test century in difficult final day circumstances and said his entire team had showed plenty character, despite their 56-run defeat to Pakistan in the day/night opening Test here yesterday.
Bravo stroked 116 at the Dubai International Stadium as West Indies, chasing 346 for victory, came up short on 289 in their second innings to fall 0-1 behind in the three-Test series.
"It was a quality innings and he batted really well in both the first and second innings," Holder told reporters afterwards.
"I think he showed a lot of maturity in both those innings. He spent some time, he gave himself a really good chance to get a score and you could see the determination on his face and in his expressions, and even his body language I thought it was very, very positive.
"Hopefully we can continue in this vein and keep Darren Bravo leading our batting."
Unbeaten on 26 at the start with West Indies on 95 for two, the left-hander survived the loss of veteran partner Marlon Samuels for four to the first ball of the day, to keep Pakistan at bay.
All told, he faced 249 balls in a marathon 6-3/4 hours at the crease, and struck ten fours and a six. He anchored half-century stands with Roston Chase (35) and Jason Holder (40 not out), to carry West Indies' victory bid late into the final session.
However, with perhaps one of his few false strokes of the innings, he mis-timed a drive back to Yasir Shah in the final hour to be seventh out at 263, and Holder said that dismissal was the turning point in the contest.
"That was obviously a crucial moment there. Bravo was the set batsman, he'd played beautifully up until that point but it was tough coming out of the rough with Yasir Shah," he explained.
West Indies were always up against it once they conceded a lead of 222 on first innings after Pakistan had piled up a mammoth 579 for three declared in their first innings.
However, with leg-spinner Devendra Bishoo taking eight for 49, the Windies bundled out Pakistan for 123 in their second innings to open up the game.
Final scores: PAKISTAN 579 for three decl. (Azhar Ali 302 not out, Sami Aslam 90, Babar Azam 69, Asad Shafiq 67; Devendra Bishoo 2-125) and 123 (Sami Aslam 44, Babar Azam 21; Devendra Bishoo 8-49).
WEST INDIES 357 (Darren Bravo 87, Marlon Samuels 76, Jermaine Blackwood 37; Yasir Shah 5-121, Mohammad Nawaz 2-38) and 289 (Darren Bravo 116, Leon Johnson 47, Jason Holder 40 not out; Mohammad Amir 3-63, Mohammad Nawaz 2-32, Yasir Shah 2-113)