1st Test England Vs West Indies at Southampton
England First Innings 204 All Out in 67.3 Overs (BA Stokes 43, JC Buttler 35, DM Bess 31*, RJ Burns 30, JO Holder 6/42 , ST Gabriel 4/62 ) and 2nd Innings 15/0 in 10 overs.
West Indies 318 in 102 Overs ( KC Brathwaite 65 , SO Dorwich 61, RL Chase 47, SSJ Brooks 39, JD Campbell 28, BA Stokes 4/49 , JM Anderson 3/62, DM Bess 2/51)
Dogged batting by gritty West Indians against quality English attack earned them a very useful 114 first innings lead. England at stumps of day three scored 15 for no loss. The tourists are still at comfortable position. But with sun shine returning first session of day four would dictate which way the match would be heading. If England bats well and get up to 300 in the second innings it may turn out a very interesting test.
Several Caribbean batsmen got start and got going but none could make a hundred as English bowlers kept probing at tight length and line. Captain Stokes led the way taking 4/49 and champion bowler Anderson chipped in with 3/62. Spinner Bess also took 2/51.
After two days of repeated rain interruptions brilliant sun shine and blue sky returned. Basking in the sun shine b Brathwaite and Hope made cautious start. Much was expected of Shai Hope. But an aggressive intent of Hope caused him lose his wicket to English spinner Bess. West Indies lost their second wicket at 102 exactly half what England scored. Brooks and Braithwaite were doing alright. But captain Stokes coming to the attack trapped patient Braithwaite plumb in front for 65 when matters started looking rosy for the tourists. Chase joined Brooks. They were going smoothly till Brooks was again trapped LBW by Anderson. Chase held the fort at one end. But none could stay with him long enough. Still a patient 61 by Dorwich ensured that West Indies earned a very handy 114 runs first innings lead.
English captain Stokes bowled intelligently taking 4/ 49. Unfortunately his two express pacers Archer and Wood disappointed. Anderson made his as usual wicket taking contribution taking 3/62. England definitely lost a trick not including Stuart Broad for the test. Don Bess bowled with control and may turn handy in the fourth innings. Ben Stokes proved yet again why he is rated very high as a top all rounder.
Coming to bat for the last 10 overs English openers survived and 15 of 114 runs deficit was wiped off. West Indies will need striking early on day four and keep taking wickets at regular interval. England challenging West Indies with anything above 175 in the fourth Innings may be too much for West Indies to achieve.
BDST: 1215 HRS, JUL 11, 2020