NEW DELHI: Starting the day at 143 not out, not many would have bet against Virat Kohli getting a double hundred in the first session and it only took 281 deliveries for the Indian skipper to achieve the milestone and help India to 404 for the loss of four wickets at lunch on Day 2. Kohli was in supreme touch on day one and unlike his teammates, did not lose his concentration and day two was just an extension of what he did the previous day.
Kohli had the company of Ravichandran Ashwin (22*), who came in to bat at number six – the highest position he has batted thus far in his career. And the duo went in to the break with an unbroken partnership worth 168 runs for the fifth wicket. Kohli brought up his maiden double-ton, the first Indian captain to achieve the feat overseas in the last over of the session whipping Roston Chase delivery to the midwicket. The celebration mirrored the mature player he had become as he got on to his knees and kissing the hallowed turf of the Sir Vivian Richards Stadium.
The duo of Kohli and Ashwin had no problem in the first session as the likes of Shannon Gabriel and Jason Holder failed to pose any kind of threat. Gabriel banged in a few short deliveries, but with not much bounce in the pitch, Ashwin pulled and hooked with ease. He drove marvelously well, often astonishing Kohli at the non-striker’s end. Kohli was sublime with his drives and flicks, while watching Ashwin’s ease in the middle on a placid wicket, Cheteshwar Pujara and Ajinkya Rahane – both of whom got out to long hops on Day 1- would have been kicking themselves on missing out on a golden opportunity.
Ashwin played around the wicket earned five boundaries in the first session. He pulled well, drove superbly and even punched a backfoot drive to perfection en route to his seventh Test fifty off 127 balls. However, he also got a reprieve while batting on 43 when he chanced his arms to Gabriel’s full outside off 149 click delivery only to find a thickish outside edge. Wicketkeeper Shane Dowrich, playing only his third Test, in a bid to celebrate, grassed a regulation take. Gabriel went on to beat Ashwin’s bat on couple of occasion, but he survived and then thrived
Kohli too had a couple of nervous moments when immediately after break he swished at an outside delivery from Gabriel and missed and then almost played one to his stumps. Barring these to blips, Kohli was on top of the game and India on top of West Indies as India accumulated 102 runs in the morning session.
India 404/4 (Kohli 200*; Dhawan 84, Ashwin 64*; Bishoo 3/131) vs West Indies