Australia were confident they could still win the second Test against the West Indies despite losing most of the fourth day on Wednesday to rain.
Australia’s hopes of pushing for a series-clinching victory were thwarted by a torrential storm at the Queen’s Park Oval in Trinidad.
Most of the day was lost, leaving Australia 127 runs ahead with seven second-innings wickets in hand.
With more showers forecast for yesterday, a draw was looming as the most likely result, which would be enough for Australia to retain the Frank Worrell Trophy after the tourists won last week’s first Test in Barbados.
However, Australia opening batsman Ed Cowan said his team were not giving up hope of winning, and might even be prepared to roll the dice and risk defeat to give themselves a chance of victory.
“I don’t think there’s any doubt about that,” Cowan said. “We’ll open up the game at some point, probably willing to lose it for the chance to win it. It will depend on whether they’re willing to risk the game, I guess.”
If the weather stays fine, Australia’s best chances of forcing a result would be to try and add another 100 runs before lunch then set up an early declaration that the West Indies would be tempted to chase.
“I’m not the captain. I haven’t spoken to [coach] Mickey [Arthur] or [captain] Michael [Clarke], but on that wicket we’ve seen scoring rates at a little over two for the game so 230, 240 runs even off 65, 70 overs [would be tough],” Cowan said. “That’s long enough for us to bowl them out if they’re willing to have a go. We’ll see.”
West Indies fast bowler Kemar Roach, who captured all three second innings wickets to take his total to eight for the match, said the home team would also press for a victory, but the prospects were dim.
Roach has been the standout bowler for the West Indies and once again provided the breakthroughs when his team needed them.
He dismissed David Warner and Shane Watson in his first over, knocking Watson’s off-stump out of the ground.
Roach removed Cowan for 20 before the rain washed out the rest of the day, just when the Australia batsman was starting to look dangerous.
In four of his last six Test innings, Cowan has seen good starts only to be dismissed between 20 and 35.