Great Malcom Marshall invincible as Kensington smiles on West Indies once more in the Third Test match at Barbados on April 26 till May 1, 1986. As has so frequently been the case of late the West Indies swept to a huge victory at Kensington Oval in the Third Test, the fifth in successive Tests on the ground, their sixth in the last seven.
They beat India by an innings and 97 runs in 1976, Australia by nine wickets in 1978, England by 298 runs in 1981, and India and Australia by 10 wickets each in the previous two seasons. The margin was again 10 wickets, the match completed 37 minutes into the last day in spite of the accumulated loss of almost eight hours to the sudden and decisive end of Barbados’s dry season.
Heavy overnight and early morning rain delayed the start until an hour and five minutes after lunch on an opening day and the pitch never had the opportunity to harden under the influence of the sun. Although there was some bounce and movement for the fast bowlers, of whom there were seven in all, there was the little pace. The loss of the toss was a psychological blow for the New Zealanders, although there was nothing devilish in the bowling to merit their total of 94, the lowest ever recorded in the 22 Tests on the ground, three below Australia’s second innings 97 last season.
The match was virtually lost on the abbreviated first day when New Zealand lost four wickets for 18 off 19.5 overs. There was a lot of hesitant batting and poor stroke play which flattered the bowling, steady as it was, and the West Indies were batting before tea on the second day despite another delayed start. After the early loss of Gordon Greenidge, the West Indies were within three of the lead late on the second afternoon when Martin Crowe, in his first spell of the tour, removed Richardson and Gomes in the same over.
Richard Hadlee promptly had Haynes caught behind. New Zealand kept in contention until the moment Malcom Marshall joined Viv Richards at 174 for seven, 40 minutes before lunch. They added 83 in just over one hour and then Joel Garner came to add further frustration with an exhilarating partnership of 70 at a run-a-minute with Marshall. That included one of the biggest hits anyone could remember at the ground, straight over the pavilion from Garner off the left-arm spinner Stephen Boock, who conceded five sixes in all. Richards survived a first ball scare on the third morning when he was 11, his mistimed hook off Richard Hadlee falling inches short of Boock at deep square-leg.
After that, he batted with complete authority for nearly 3, hours, counting three sixes and 12 fours in his 19th Test century. With a deficit of 242, New Zealand’s hopes were raised by torrential rain overnight and on the rest day, but the previously parched ground soaked up over an inch and a half of water, and the covers proved adequate so that only an hour was lost at the start of the fourth day. Again Malcom Marshall, 10 of those wickets were taken from round the wicket, exposed the frailty of the New Zealand batting, which failed to take advantage of an ideal pitch and the absence for all but one over of Holding, who strained his right hamstring muscle.
John Wright enjoyed his best innings of the series, 64, filled with positive strokes, but only a belated partnership between the reliable Coney and the number 10, Boock, that put on 77 in 1, hours carried the match into its final day, Coney was quickly out, his top score of 83 including five fours and occupying three hours 55 minutes, and it was left to Smith, resuming his innings interrupted when Malcom Marshall struck him on the forearm the previous afternoon, to avoid at least the indignity of an innings defeat. The victory was the first by the West Indies over New Zealand since the Auckland Test of 1969, 13 Tests earlier.
WHILE New Zealand’s reputation as spirited fighters were enhanced in the first of two tests of the series, their performances in the one-day internationals did not support the evidence of their record. Of the Test-playing teams, only the West Indies, England and New Zealand have won more matches than they have lost, and New Zealand has always been considered an efficient combination, writes Tony Cozier. After losing the first two matches, the New Zealanders appeared to have lost all interest and motivation, and they were badly beaten in the last three matches.
In the third, in the sugar town of Albion on Guyana’s east coast, Desmond Haynes propelled the West Indies to an almost unreachable 259 for five from 50 overs with his seventh century in one-day inter- nationals, 146 not out with 16 fours, in punishing command from the start to finish. Against deadly straight bowling, New Zealand lost their first seven’ wickets all bowled, the first five by the time the total was 48 and limped to 129 all out.
In the fourth, they were caught on a surprisingly green and lively pitch after being sent in, and Joel Garner demolished them with an opening spell of four wickets for 10 from which they only partially recovered to total a meager 116. Haynes, for the second time in two days, enjoyed himself at the expense of bowlers who now had nothing to play for and, with Richie Richardson, finished the match by 3 o’clock. Not yet satisfied, Desmond Haynes played another match-winning innings in the final international when New Zealand were again outplayed.