Brathwaite, Chanderpaul set new record opening partnership for Windies
West Indies' Kraigg Brathwaite (left) and Tagenarine Chanderpaul (right)

Kraigg Brathwaite and Tagenarine Chanderpaul set a new West Indies record of 336 for the first wicket on Monday as the Caribbean side reached 374-2 by lunch on day three of the first Test against Zimbabwe.

The stand surpassed the 298-run partnership shared by Gordon Greenidge and Desmond Haynes against England in Antigua 33 years ago.

It is the ninth highest opening partnership in Test history, a long way short of the overall record of 415 added by South Africa's Graeme Smith and Neil McKenzie against Bangladesh in Chattogram in 2008.

Both batsmen began the day at the Queens Sports Club with hundreds under their belts as West Indies resumed on 221 without loss after two rain-hit days.

The scoring rate had been under two and half until that point but Brathwaite, 116 not out overnight, immediately set about the Zimbabwe attack with the run rate early on standing at five per over.

Brathwaite clattered his way to 182 and looked odds-on to score the second double-century of his Test career when he was trapped leg before by spinner Wellington Masakadza.

For once the captain misread the length and tried to sweep a full-length delivery on off stump, ending an innings which spanned 312 balls and included 18 fours.

It was a welcome return to form for Brathwaite, who made only 19 and three against Australia in his last Test, two months ago in Adelaide.

It was small reward for the Zimbabwe bowlers who had toiled 114 overs before making the breakthrough.

And they were rewarded with a second wicket before lunch when Kyle Mayers was bowled through the gate by leg-spinner Brandon Mavuta for 20.

The inexperienced Zimbabwe team, which includes five making their Test debuts, missed several catches which would have improved their position even further.

Chanderpaul, son of former West Indies skipper Shivnarine, pressed on from his overnight 101 to reach 161 not out at the interval, like Brathwaite, picking up the tempo from a sluggish first two days.

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