Gayle, Chanderpaul tons bring big lead

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Centuries from opener Chris Gayle and the veteran Shivnarine Chanderpaul carried the West Indies to 381 for eight – for a lead of 206 – in response to Zimbabwe's 175 all out on day two of the second Test at Windsor Park in Dominica on Thursday.

Centuries from opener Chris Gayle and the veteran Shivnarine Chanderpaul carried the West Indies to 381 for eight – for a lead of 206 – on day two of the second Test at Windsor Park in Dominica on Thursday.

Gayle scored 101 and Chanderpaul 108 as West Indies closed day two on 381 for eight for a lead of 206. With Denesh Ramdin also scoring 86 the signs were looking ominous for the visitors, who were bidding to take a first win on this tour.

After losing in the Twenty20 and one-day series they also lost by nine wickets in Bridgetown in the first of two Tests. But after bowling Zimbabwe out for 175 on day one and resuming on 114 for two, the home side got off to the worst possible start as Marlon Samuels was bowled first ball by Tendai Chatara.

Samuels fell to a yorker having scored 26 with the total still on the overnight mark of 114. But from there Gayle, unbeaten on 61 at the start of play, and Chanderpaul took control.

Gayle got to his century in style, hitting successive sixes off Prosper Utseya and then claiming a single to reach his hundred. But the big-hitting opener had added only one more run to his total before being dismissed when Utseya returned two overs later, the left-hander slicing the ball to long-off where Kyle Jarvis took a difficult catch.

Gayle, whose 101 came off 145 balls and included 12 fours and four sixes, had put on 67 for the fourth wicket with Chanderpaul, leaving the home side six runs in front. There were no more breakthroughs before lunch which was reached with the home side on 201.

Chanderpaul took his time, in contrast to Gayle, and he and Ramdin steered the home side to tea on 295 without further loss and leave Zimbabwe facing more hard work in the field. West Indies had reached 354 when Ramdin fell for 86 when he was trapped lbw by Graeme Cremer.

Darren Sammy went cheaply for nine before Chanderpaul's was the seventh wicket to fall after he had scored a patient 108. He fell to Utseya, having hit 13 fours, when he clipped the ball to cover where Sean Williams took a catch diving forward. The same bowler struck again next ball as he bowled Kemar Roach for a duck but Tino Best survived the hat-trick ball.

Best was unbeaten on 11 and Shane Shillingford not out on four off 24 balls as West Indies 381 for eight. Judging by Zimbabwe's score in their first innings even an early declaration by the home side tomorrow would put the pressure firmly back on the tourists.

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