Brisbane, November 4:

Glenn McGrath tore through the West Indies batsmen to put Australia in command on the second day of the opening cricket Test here at the Gabba on Friday.

McGrath and master leg-spinner Shane Warne led a relentless attack to bowl their team into a dominant position, as the West Indians ran out of steam after an encouraging opening day.

McGrath claimed four wickets and Warne took another as the tourists sunk to 182 for six at stumps in reply to Australia’s imposing first innings 435. Wicketkeeper Denesh Ramdin was on 12 with Daren Powell on four.

Opening batsman Devon Smith was on course for a defiant century late in the day, only to make an error of judgment four hours into his stint at the crease, offering no shot and getting bowled by McGrath for 88. With him went the tourists’ last hope of getting past the 235 follow-on target. It was a dark day for the Windies, as Brett Lee grabbed Brian Lara’s key wicket for 30 in a contentious decision made by South African umpire Ian Howell in the 40th over.

The ‘Prince’ looked to have finally regained his batting touch in a 101-minute vigil, but he was deceived by a slower ball from wide of the crease and was given out. Television replays indicated that the ball may have missed leg-stump, and the decision was a massive blow to the tourists’ chances of whittling away the gap with Australia.

Nathan Bracken made a superb diving full-length catch to dismiss West Indian captain Shivnarine Chanderpaul to give Warne his wicket. Chanderpaul had pottered around for 32 balls to score two, but he lashed out at Warne and Bracken made the sprawling catch at wide mid-on to leave the Windies at 149 for four in the 51st over.

McGrath, the third all-time leading Test wicket-taker, struck twice before tea, removing Chris Gayle (10) and Ramnaresh Sarwan (21) in his first eight overs.

Gayle played a reckless swipe to edge to Adam Gilchrist, and Sarwan’s lively 26-ball stay ended when he was also pouched by Gilchrist, leaving the West Indies at 74 for two.

Australia’s tail-enders added 95 runs to their overnight total of 340 for seven, to put the heat on the West Indies with Warne and Lee both clubbing 47 and Bracken contributing 37.

Australia’s 435 total had them in the box seat with the Gabba pitch expected to take a turn for Warne later in the five-day Test — and with the West Indies likely to bat last. Warne upstaged his more credentialled batting teammates with a 71-ball cameo with four fours.

Lee launched a massive six off Powell that cleared the towering mid-wicket grandstand and disappeared out of the arena, forcing the umpires to call for a replacement ball. Lee pounded six fours to go along with the six in 127 minutes.

Bracken, preferred to second leg-spinner Stuart MacGill for the Test, compiled 37 before he was out to Fidel Edwards in the second over after lunch.


AUSTRALIA — 1st innings (overnight 340-7)

S Warne c Ramdin b Powell 47

B Lee c Collymore b Powell 47

N Bracken c Sarwan b Edwards 37

G McGrath not out 6

Extras: 46 (b5, lb13, w6, nb22)

Total: 435

FoW: 1-9, 2-101, 3-108, 4-111, 5-215, 6-273, 7-294, 8-369, 9-417

West Indies bowling: Edwards 21.3-1-94-2, Powell 20-1-100-3, Collymore 26-4-72-4, Lawson 14-0-73-1, Samuels 4-0-29-0, Gayle 20-3-49-0

WEST INDIES — 1st innings

C Gayle c Gilchrist b McGrath 10

D Smith b McGrath 88

R Sarwan c Gilchrist b McGrath 21

B Lara lbw b Lee 30

S Chanderpaul c Bracken b Warne 2

M Samuels c Gilchrist b McGrath 5

D Ramdin not out 12

D Powell not out 4

Extras: 10 (lb7, nb3)

Total: 182/6

FoW: 1-20, 2-74, 3-134, 4-149, 5-161, 6-174

Australia bowling: McGrath 18-2-58-4, Lee 12-4-50-1, Bracken 10-4-23-0, Warne 20-5-43-1, Clarke 2-1-1-0