KINGSTON (Jamaica), Sep 2 (IANS): Hanuma Vihari and Ajinkya Rahane struck well-compiled half centuries to set an improbable 468-run target for the West Indies and took India closer to a series win on Day Three of the second and final Test at the Sabina Park.
On Sunday, first innings centurion Vihari (53*) and in-form Rahane (64*) stitched together a 111-run partnership for the fifth wicket to take India out of shambles and declare at 168/4, allowing the bowlers to have a short go of 13 overs at the West Indies batters before the end of the day's play.
At Stumps, the hosts were 45/2 with Darren Bravo and Shamarh Brooks batting at 18 and 4, respectively. Going by the way the Windies batters have performed so far in the series, it could be rest assured that the Men in Blue will finish the game on the fourth day itself.
Earlier in the day, India decided not to enforce the follow-on despite having a hefty first-innings lead of 299 runs as they bundled out West Indies for mere 117.
Resuming the day at 87/7, the hosts could bat for just 14.1 overs as they could manage to add another 30 runs to their overnight score.
Hat-trick hero Jasprit Bumrah finished with figures of 6/27, while Mohammed Shami bagged two wickets. Ishant Sharma and Ravindra Jadeja took one wicket each and help India take a gigantic lead of close to 300 runs.
India, who were bowled out for 416 in the first innings, didn't have a great start to their second innings as they lost Mayank Agarwal (4) who was trapped in front by Kemar Roach. Agarwal went for a review but it was in vain. At Lunch, India were 16/1 with K.L. Rahul (6) and Cheteshwar Pujara (5) batting at the crease.
After the break, Rahul, who faced 63 balls, was caught behind as Roach bowled a probing line. Rahul did not look comfortable during his stay at the crease and failed to negotiate a Roach beauty.
India skipper Virat Kohli was sent packing for a first-ball duck in the very next ball of the 21st over as Roach moved to ninth on the all time most Test wicket takers for West Indies, surpassing Wes Hall at 193 wickets.
Vice-captain Rahane then joined Pujara in the middle but the latter was dismissed just before tea as Jason Holder, who took five wickets in the first innings, got him caught at third slip by Brooks for 27.
However, from 57/4, the Indian deputy skipper joined forces with Vihari and made sure the visitors didn't lose the advantage. The duo batted superbly and took the Indian total to 168/4 when Kohli decided to declare.
Brief scores: India (1st innings): 416 all out (Hanuma Vihari 111, Virat Kohli 76; Jason Holder 5/77); West Indies (1st innings): 117 all out (Shimron Hetmyer 34, Jasprit Bumrah 6/27); India (2nd innings): 168/4 (Ajinkya Rahane 64*, Hanuma Vihari 53*), West Indies (2nd innings): 45/2 (Darren Bravo 18*, John Campbell 16; Mohammed Shami 1/12)