Matt Renshaw, Marcus Harris lead PM’s XI with the bat, before West Indies fight back

Stumps Prime Minister’s XI 297 for 9 (Renshaw 81, Harris 73, Joseph 3-52, Chase 2-72) vs West Indies

West Indies finally have some hope ahead of their Frank Worrell Trophy series against Australia, fighting back from an early hole to take the challenge up to the Prime Minister’s XI. They were staring down the barrel of another disastrous day with the ball when PM’s XI were 134 for 0, but showed spirit to take six wickets in the evening session and finish the day at 297 for 9 at the Manuka Oval.

The PM’s side resumed after the dinner break at 198 for 3, but the visitors found a spark through spinner Roston Chase, his two wickets swinging the game slightly in their favour at stumps. Chase first produced a gem that turned plenty and clean bowled Aaron Hardie, while another great delivery spun past Peter Handscomb and had him stumped for 55.

The visitors took the new pink ball late in the evening session of the four-day, day-night clash, and immediately found some reward, with Alzarri Joseph knocking over Michael Neser and Joel Paris. And he found a third with the last ball of the night, with Ashton Agar chopping on to his stumps after a quickfire 33.

It was the lifeline they needed after a dismal afternoon that saw PM’s XI openers Marcus Harris and Matt Renshaw cruise through their triple-figure partnership. Harris, the only PM’s XI player in Australia’s squad for the first Test in Perth next Wednesday, continued his strong form and made 73 before a loose slash saw him caught at second slip.

Renshaw took over and thumped ten boundaries in his 81, but also fell short of a century when he edged Raymon Reifer to the slips.

Future Test hopeful Henry Hunt couldn’t show the form that made him last season’s Sheffield Shield player of the year, falling for 13.

Joseph (3 for 52) led the way, and Chase (2 for 72) was important, while frontline quick Kemar Roach took 1 for 40. It was an important fightback from West Indies, playing just days after conceding 426 for 4 against a combined ACT/NSW XI.

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