| Justin Langer is not amused after being ruled lbw off Vasbert Drakes in Port-of-Spain Monday. (Reuters)
Port-of-Spain: Matthew Hayden returned to form with an unbeaten half-century as Australia swelled their lead over the West Indies to 298 runs on the fourth day of the second Test at Queen’s Park Oval here Tuesday.
The Australians lost the wicket of first innings double centurion Ricky Ponting for 45 in the morning session and went to lunch at 130 for two in their second innings.
Hayden had raised his 11th Test half-century and was unbeaten on 63 with Darren Lehmann, who scored his maiden Test century in the first innings, batting on two.
The West Indies, chasing 407 for victory, were 62 for two at 2 am with Wavell Hinds on 29 and Brian Lara on 28. Jason Gillespie took both wickets, those of Devon Smith (0) and Daren Ganga (2). Australia earlier declared their second innings closed at 238 for three at tea. Hayden was not out on 100 and Lehmann made 66, the two putting on 120 for the third wicket.
Australia, looking to build a lead of around 400 runs, added 99 runs off 29 overs in the opening session at a run rate of 3.4.
There was some drama with the Ponting dismissal five overs before lunch.
Ponting edged pacer Mervyn Dillon and was caught low down by debutant wicketkeeper Carlton Baugh, but he stood his ground seeking confirmation of the catch before he left the wicket.
Dillon, on his extended follow through, appeared to brush Ponting’s helmet. The Aussie vice-captain, with his bat pointed, exchanged angry words with Dillon before talking with South African umpire Rudi Koertzen.
Ponting, who scored 206 in the first innings, put on 106 for the second wicket with Hayden, who finally hit form after a couple of low scores.
Earlier, Trinidad’s Daren Ganga celebrated playing his first Test at home with a century, while Marlon Samuels scored a half-century as West Indies avoided the follow on on Monday.
Ganga, the first Trinidadian to score a Test ton at the Queen’s Park Oval for 20 years, made 117 as West Indies reached 408 all out (briefly reported in the Late City edition of these columns Tuesday), 168 runs behind Australia’s first innings total.
Samuels, whose place in the side had been in danger after he scored nought and seven in the first Test, chipped in with a 68 after Australia had taken two quick wickets after lunch.
The bowlers continued Caribbean recovery when Vasbert Drakes had Justin Langer lbw for three in the sixth over of Australia’s second innings. Langer left the crease shaking his head following his second lbw dismissal of the match.