Opener Kraigg Brathwaite and veteran Shivnarine Chanderpaul hit unbeaten half-centuries to guide the West Indies to 159 for the loss of three wickets, at tea on the opening day of the first test against India.

The 87-run unbeaten stand between the pair revived the tourists after the Indian spinners had reduced them to 72-3 soon after lunch. Brathwaite is batting on 61, his second test half-century. Chanderpaul has 55, so far, to his name.

The West Indies got off to a poor start after skipper Darren Sammy won the toss and decided to bat at the Feroz Shah Kotla stadium in Delhi.

Aware of the visitors' frailty against spin, Indian captain Dhoni brought Pragyan Ojha into the attack in the 10th over and was soon rewarded. Ojha dropped Kieran Powell, when the latter was on14, off his sixth delivery but made amends when he returned to trap the batsman leg before in his next over.

The turn Ojha generated prompted Dhoni to press Ravichandran Ashwin, who made his test debut alongside paceman Umesh Yadav, into service from the other end and the pressure paid off.

Ojha struck again in the 24th over when the in-form Kirk Edwards drove forwards to give the spinner a return catch. Edwards was out for 15.

Ashwin would not be denied his maiden test wicket as he forced a delivery through Darren Bravo's porous defense in the first over after lunch, dismissing him for 12.

However, Brathwaite dug in at the other end and Chanderpaul looked more at ease against the spinners, even hitting Ashwin for a six midway through his innings.