West Indies on the Backfoot: Head’s Century, Hazlewood’s Four-Fer

In a remarkable turn of events on Day 2 of the first Test between Australia and West Indies in Adelaide, Travis Head’s aggressive century and Josh Hazlewood’s impressive four-wicket haul in consecutive innings established Australia’s firm control. Despite Shamar Joseph’s debut five-wicket haul, Head’s seventh Test century propelled the hosts to a substantial 95-run lead. Hazlewood capitalized on this advantage with a brilliant opening spell, causing the Windies to lose six wickets in a single session and finish at 73/6, trailing by an additional 22 runs.

Hazlewood’s Four-Fer Sparks West Indies Collapse

Hazlewood’s mastery with the new ball was evident as he maintained an unplayable form throughout his spell, concluding with remarkable figures of 4 wickets for just 11 runs in 6 overs. West Indies struggled to score against him, finally registering their first runs off his bowling in the fifth over with a thick inside edge.

The early stages of West Indies’ innings were disastrous, as Hazlewood dismissed Tagenarine Chanderpaul on the first delivery, and Kraigg Brathwaite fell victim to a sharp catch by Head at short leg. Alick Athanaze survived a close call but eventually gloved an attempted hook to the ‘keeper. Kavem Hodge edged to second slip, handing Hazlewood his fourth wicket, and West Indies found themselves at a precarious 7 for 3 after just six overs.

Kirk McKenzie provided a brief respite for the visitors with a positive half-century, surviving a couple of early scares. However, his dismissal to Cam Green left West Indies struggling at 40/5, still trailing by 55 runs. A resilient 33-run partnership between Justin Greaves and Joshua Da Silva offered a glimmer of hope, but Greaves fell for 24 at the stroke of stumps after Nathan Lyon successfully overturned the on-field not-out decision using the DRS.

With West Indies still 22 runs away from making Australia bat again and only four wickets in hand, the visitors face an uphill battle.

Travis Head’s Commanding Century
Australia

Earlier in the day, Travis Head’s innings of two halves, converting a hard-fought fifty into a counterattacking hundred, set the stage for Australia’s dominance. Despite West Indies picking up crucial wickets in the morning session, Head’s century propelled Australia to a first-innings total of 283, holding a lead despite Shamar Joseph’s impressive five-wicket haul.

As the Test match unfolds, Head’s heroic century and Hazlewood’s bowling brilliance have become defining moments, shaping the narrative of a captivating contest between two cricketing powerhouses. Stay tuned for further updates on this thrilling encounter.


https://www.cricbuzz.com/cricket-news/129176/head-hazlewood-extend-australias-dominance

https://www.espncricinfo.com/series/west-indies-in-australia-2023-24-1375837/australia-vs-west-indies-1st-test-1375845/match-report-2

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