ROSEAU, Dominica (AP) — Ravichandran Ashwin feasted on West Indies wickets on a generous turning pitch to propel India to victory by an innings and 141 runs inside three days of the first test on Friday.
Ashwin took 7-71 in the second innings, his best figures overseas, and 12-131 for the match.
West Indies were all out for 130 in less than 51 overs after scoring 150 in the first innings.
New India opener Yashasvi Jaiswal outscored the West Indies on his own with 171. He and captain Rohit Sharma drained the home side with their opening stand of 229. Then Jaiswal rubbed it in by leading a partnership of 110 with Virat Kohli.
India’s Ravichandran Ashwin reacts next to West Indies’ Jason Holder while bowling on day three of their first cricket Test match at Windsor Park in Roseau, Dominica, Friday, July 14, 2023. (AP Photo/Ricardo Mazalan).
Rohit was impressed by Jaiswal.
“His temperament was tested but at no point did it look like he was panicking,” Rohit said. “I just had to remind him, ‘You belong here.’ My job was to just keep telling him he’s done all the hard yards and to enjoy his time in the middle.”
India declared their first innings at 421-5 about an hour after lunch for a lead of 271.
Offering spin-friendly Windsor Park to two of the world’s best spinners came to bite the West Indies hard.
Ashwin, the No. 1-ranked test bowler with a point to prove after being omitted from the World Test Championship final, and Ravindra Jadeja, the No. 1-ranked test allrounder, padded already impressive statistics with 17 of the 20 West Indies wickets.
“When you have the kind of experience they have on these pitches, it is always a luxury,” Rohit said. “Ashwin and Jadeja were magnificent, especially Ashwin.”
Beside 5-60 from the first innings, Ashwin’s dozen wickets in the match gave him an eighth 10-wicket haul in a test, tying Anil Kumble’s India record. They are tied for fifth on the all-time list.
Jadeja took 2-38 on Friday for a match haul of five wickets.
In West Indies’ second turn at bat, the top order’s priority was merely surviving but both openers were gone by tea, both on 7.
Tagenarine Chanderpaul was leg before to Jadeja, and cost West Indies a review, and captain Kraigg Brathwaite was caught at first slip trying to defend Ashwin.
The batters through lunch, Jermaine Blackwood and Raymon Reifer, were out within five balls of each other also trying to defend the spin; Blackwood was trapped by Ashwin and Reifer was lbw to Jadeja.
When Joshua Da Silva was plum in front to pacer Mohammed Siraj, West Indies was 58 for five in the 30th over.
Alick Athanaze, on debut, top-scored in both innings, 47 and 28, the only scores over 20. “You could see that he belongs,” Brathwaite said. Athanaze was dropped on 1 by Jaiswal at short leg but Jaiswal snaffled up the next chance.
Ashwin took the last five wickets, the 23rd time he’s taken the match-winning wicket, eclipsing Shane Warne’s 22 occasions.
West Indies have gone the distance only twice in their last 10 tests going back 16 months.
Meanwhile, India extended their unbeaten run in the Caribbean to 14 tests with a seventh win since 2006. The second test in Port of Spain, the 100th between the teams, starts on Thursday.
The highest score by an India man on debut was 187 by Shikhar Dhawan in 2013, and Jaiswal looked set to beat it on Friday morning when he resumed on 143.
The opener hit slow left-armer Jomel Warrican back over his head for his first test six and wriggled to 171 when he nicked pacer Alzarri Joseph behind and was out caught at 350-3. Jaiswal didn’t look happy, though he had the highest score by an India debutant outside India, and faced more balls than any of India’s previous debut centurions.
His mammoth innings spanning three days and nearly 8 1/2 hours came from 387 balls and included 16 boundaries.
Ajinkya Rahane came in and didn’t last, patting back a bouncer from Kemar Roach on 3.
Kohli racked up his 57th fifty and third slowest, and he and Jadeja took India to lunch on 400-4 with a lead of 250.
Kohli looked good for his 29th test hundred and only his second in the Caribbean while riding his luck.
He gave a half-chance at leg slip before he scored, and was dropped twice on Friday on 40 and 72. Kohli’s luck ran out when off-spinner Rahkeem Cornwall returned to bowl for the first time in more than 24 hours. He left the field on Thursday morning due to an apparent chest infection but started Friday in the field.
In Cornwall’s second over of the day, Kohli turned him down the leg side and steered the ball straight to slip fielder Athanaze. Kohli’s hard-fought 76 from 182 balls included five boundaries.
India waited six more overs to declare at 421-5, after Ishan Kishan scored his first run on his test debut about an hour after lunch. Jadeja was 37 not out.
The wickets were shared around and Roach was unlucky to have only one. Warrican did most of the heavy lifting, 45 overs for 1-106. Cornwall’s absence allowed Athanaze to take his maiden wicket.