What do you expect from a team that is already 3-0 down in a 4 test series against the mighty Australians – only that they might go for a draw in the last one. Well that was not what the West Indian Team had in their minds. Both the teams scored 240 runs at the cost of 10 wickets in their first innings although the Carribbean team did so at a faster rate.

Having scored 417 in their second innings thanks to blistering 242 run partnership from their openers, Australia was on the verge of a clean sweep. Mathew Hayden hit 177 runs in 260 balls , an innings that included 22 boundaries and 3 maximums. Justin Langer matched his century with another scoring 111 runs of 161 balls hitting 17 boundaries and a maximum. A sizeable contribution from Steve Waugh of 45 runs and that was all about that took their second innings total to 417. Mervyn Dillon was the pick of the bowlers as he took 4 wickets.Banks and Drakes took two wickets a piece.

When the Carribbeans walked down to chase in the 4th innings, a daunting total of 417 against a bowling lineup that boasted of Jason Gillespie, Glenn McGrath and Brett Lee little did they know that they are going to chase it. This chase stands tallest among all the successful score chased in the 4th innings till date.

It was a cautious start by Gayle and Devon Smith but soon the WI found themselves 3 wickets down at just 74 runs. Brian Lara scored gritty 60 runs and steadied the ship. Then can the two centurians – Ramnaresh Sarwan and Shivnarine Chanderpaul who took their team to a spectacular win. Sarwan scored 105 runs of 139 balls which included 17 boundaries. Chanderpaul gave him ample support scoring 104 runs of 154 balls hitting 17 boundaries and a maximum. Brett Lee was the pick of the bowlers picking 4 wickets.

This match though couldn’t alter the way this series has already went as Australia win the series 3-1, but showed the character of an unconventional Carribbean team that they will not be intimidated by a huge total. This win will be remembered as and when the great wins by WI will be mentioned. Their were few controversial conversation between Steve Waugh and Brian Lara and that between McGrath and Sarwan but that is what you expect when such spectacular matches happen.

The Australian team took the Carribbeans for granted and paid the price by losing the final test. Jeremiah Lawson was the pick among the bowlers in the first innings as he took 7 scalps. Chanderpaul was adjuged Man of the Match.

Source : Cricinfo – Sarwan celebrating his century with Chanderpaul

Brian Lara considered this win the zenith of his career.