- West Indies vs England, third Test: live scoreboard from St Lucia
- ENG (277 & 361/5d) defeated WI (154 & 252) by 232 runs
England won the third Test on the fourth evening by 232 runs. Even though it occurred in a dead rubber, this was a victory well worth having because it was only the 15th Test match which England have ever won in the West Indies – six of them in spin-friendly Trinidad – to set against 27 defeats. Such has been the might of West Indian fast bowlers through the ages – the forefathers of Kemar Roach, the man of the series, and Shannon Gabriel, the man of the moment.
It is just a shame that England did not start this series with the same sharpness, intensity and sensible selection which they brought to the third Test.
Although Root lost all three tosses, England could still have won this series – not on Antigua’s uneven surface, perhaps, but the first and third Tests – if they had seized the opening two sessions in Barbados, when West Indies had the confidence of a team languishing eighth in the ICC Test rankings.
Ahead of this summer’s Ashes, England needed a thorough test of their batting – not only the top order – and they got it all right over the last month. Only Rory Burns now deserves to be inked into England’s top three, along with Root of course if he can be persuaded to promote himself, and Burns needs his excellent close-catching to tip those scales. But England’s middle order was found wanting too, in the matter of grim application against a four-man pace attack, until Ben Stokes and Jos Buttler cobbled together the first century stand of this series for England to turn the third Test their way.
More importantly though for Test cricket, by trouncing England in the first two matches by traditional methods, West Indies proved they have bottomed out and will continue to improve – if spared another feud between their board and players. World cricket is a monochrome affair without West Indian fast bowlers tearing in and sorting sheep from goats, or men from boys, or the truly brave and skilled from the rest.
One of those fast bowlers, Gabriel, was booed for his alleged comments to Root at the start of the last day by a few England supporters (in general however it has been a series as free of sledging as almost every England v West Indies series has been).
Given that England were 448 runs ahead, the number of home supporters was inevitably scant, but what is disturbing is that the disconnect between the West Indies Test team and their people appears to remain as not a single day of this series can have attracted a thousand locals, superbly as the home side has played.
In 25 minutes before the declaration England added 36 runs and Root 11 to his overnight score before clipping Gabriel to midwicket. By moving his right foot straight back then playing forward, Root transferred his weight into some of his best cover-drives.
James Anderson, who has lain dormant for a while rather like Soufriere in the south-west of St Lucia, took three wickets in his new-ball spell. The second came from one screamer of a leaping right-handed catch by Moeen Ali in the gully – which was so good that Moeen replaced Jos Buttler at third slip immediately Buttler had dropped yet another slip catch, offered by Shai Hope off Stuart Broad. Buttler demoted himself to the outfield, which can only help the cause of Burns to retain his place as he has becoming a fine close-catcher (though he dropped a sitter at mid-off).
Mark Wood could not touch the same heights of inspiration and speed as he had during his 19-ball burst in the West Indian first innings but his bounce was sufficiently steep to have Shai Hope caught at cover. If England in the Ashes can choose between a fully fit Wood and Chris Woakes and Sam Curran for third seamer, they will be well endowed.
Joe Denly brought off a run-out to dismiss Shimron Hetmyer when going for a third, which left Roston Chase to chase a century while his remaining partners slogged and swiped at Moeen Ali. Moeen has acquired enough flight and guile this winter to tempt tailenders, thus dismissing Alzarri Joseph when he aimed for a third six in one over. Chase, after Keemo Paul had limped to the wicket as last man, completed his fifth Test century to make almost everyone on both sides happy in the end.
England win by 252 runs
Excellent from Chase who showed the way some England players could have approached a losing cause in Barbados and Antigua. He batted with great heart and discretion. The Tannoy blares out Jerusalem again. My ears. My poor ears. Andersn ends with three for 27, Stokes two for 20, Wood one for 52 and Moeen three for 99.
West Indies win the series 2-1.
Paul c&b Stokes 12 Stokes ends it with a slower bouncer that Paul tries to pull and top edges back up the pitch. Stokes takes three strides to catch it and hurls down the stumps as well to make sure. FOW 252/10
OVER 69.4: WI 2452/9 (Chase 102* Paul 12*)
Paul can’t move from the waist down but he has a good eye and phenomenal strength. He pulls Stokes’ first hard through midwicket for four and mullers a cover drive for four off the third. It’s all stand and deliver stuff. Stokes, straining for a yorker, dishes up a full toss that Paul slaps over mid off for four …
OVER 69: WI 240/9 (Chase 102* Paul 0*)
Denly comes on and Chase, who can’t take ones and twos because Paul is lame, stays where he is after controlled drives and flicks until he is given some width and he cracks it through point off the back foot for four to bring up his fifth Test hundred. Denly then beats him with a beautiful big dipper that grips and rips but inexplicably misses off-stump.
OVER 68: WI 236/9 (Chase 98* Paul 0*)
This time Chase takes the single off the second ball, glancing it off his hip and lets Stokes have four at Gabriel. He lays the trap with a couple of bouncers then give shim one to swipe at and it does the trick. Paul, on one leg after severely straining his thigh, comes in on one leg and defends the last ball.
Gabriel c Bairstow b Stokes 3 Set him up with a couple of bouncers then hung a shorter one outside off. Gabriel tried to cut it and underedges through to the keeper. FOW 236/9
OVER 67: WI 235/8 (Chase 97* Gabriel 3*)
Chase strangely takes a single off the first ball of Moeen’s over, giving Gabriel five to survive. Root doesn’t crowd him, which is also strange and he blocks a couple before being beaten by a fizzer. Again he survives. Stokes is coming on at the other end.
OVER 66: WI 234/8 (Chase 96* Gabriel 3*)
Chase is cut in half by one that snakes through his guard and feathers his trousers but follows it with two crunching drives through cover for consecutive fours. The first was struck between bowler and mid-off, the second through cover. Superb timing. He tucks the bouncer off his hip for a single to move to 96 and Gabriel blocks Broad’s last ball resolutely.
OVER 65: WI 225/8 (Chase 87* Gabriel 3*)
Chase, who apparently has been told that Paul will bat if necessary to get him to a hundred, gives Gabriel the strike for three balls after squirting a single off the toe of the bat through square leg. Moeen needs to toss it up wide to lure Gabriel to destruction but it’s all too flat and he survives.
OVER 64: WI 224/8 (Chase 86* Gabriel 3*)
Gabriel hoicks a straight ball over midwicket for two and then edges short if third slip. They should let Stokes bowl at him next. He is trying to curtail his instinctive desire to have a thrash and he does flash outside off and misses a leg-cutter that gets big on him.
OVER 63: WI 222/8 (Chase 86* Gabriel 1*)
Gabriel punches a drive in the air to Moeen’s right and takes one, Chase ends the over with successive fours, smitten straight and banjoed over extra to take West Indies to double Nelson or the Billy Birmingham chew-chew-chew.
OVER 62: WI 213/8 (Chase 78* Gabriel 0*)
The batsmen crossed while the ball was in the air and that allows Broad to bowl at Gabriel but they let him off strike from the first ballwith a leg bye they should have prevented. Chase can’t pinch the strike as Broad pens him in with a tight line and the odd bouncer. .
OVER 61: WI 212/8 (Chase 78* Gabriel 0*)
Joseph clumps an off-drive for six. He didn’t strike it cleanly and he lost control of the bat in his hand but he bullied it into the crowd. After a play and miss he clears Denly at deep midwicket by three inches for another six but then he falls when Moeen tosses another up and the bat slips a bit from his grip.
A statement from the ICC about he incoming batsman
Shannon Gabriel has been charged with a breach Article 2.13 of the ICC Code of Conduct. The charge, which was laid by match umpires, will now be dealt with by Match Referee Jeff Crowe. Until the proceedings have concluded, the ICC will not comment further.
Joseph c Anderson b Moeen 34 One slog too many, he slices the ball over the bowler when he was aiming for midwicket and Anderson gallops round to gather. FOW 212/8
OVER 60: WI 198/7 (Chase 78* Joseph 20*)
Better over from Broad who has altered his line to try a straighter approach. He though that it had earned him a a wicket but has to settle for a maiden.
OVER 59: WI 198/7 (Chase 78* Joseph 20*)
Stokes drops Joseph at slip off Moeen who has come round the wicket. Beacuse of the angle, Stokes is standing wider and he thrusts out his left hand but it doesn’t stick and though he knocks it up he can’t make the ground to grab it. Joseph then sand-wedges a drive over mid-on that just beats the fielder. At the end of the over, after practising his cow corner heave at the non-striker;s, he employs it to register a massive six that goes halfway up the grass bank at midwicket.
OVER 58: WI 190/7 (Chase 77* Joseph 13*)
Broad replaces Wood, which is the right call. Joseph keeps going for big shots and playing and missing. The commentators remind him of his responsibility to his partner, not that he can hear them. But he does wind his neck in and play the last ball sensibly, even nicking the strike after dabbing it through the slips.
OVER 57: WI 189/7 (Chase 77* Joseph 12*)
Moeen continues with his siren song. Joseph chips a drive that falls just short of mid on. Anderson makes a stunning stop that, had he missed it, could have knocked his teeth out. Joseph smites another four, all bottom hand, shovelling it past the bowler.
OVER 56: WI 184/7 (Chase 77* Joseph 7*)
Joseph shows his batting credentials and the reason for Chase’s faith with a crunching cover drive for four. Next ball he shows why he is a No10 with a massive slice that eludes cover who was backpedallling to try to snatch it. They run a single and Chase on-drives the last ball of the over for four. Pure Ricky Ponting.
OVER 55: WI 175/7 (Chase 73* Joseph 2*)
Chase clears his front leg and swats a steepling six over Moeen’s head. Boy, has he batted well. He ends the overw ith two through square leg, allowing Joseph the strike against a down on ratpower Wood.
OVER 54: WI 166/7 (Chase 65* Joseph 1*)
Wood pulls for four off Chase’s bouncer that was dreadfully in need of Viagra. The gas is running out for Wood now. Joseph had got off strike with a fortunate bye.
OVER 53: WI 161/7 (Chase 61* Joseph 1*)
England give Joseph the single to mid-off and successfully keep Chase away from Wood at the cost of a four off the last ball that Chase square drives for four. Broad waves it on its way to the boundary.
Roach c Wood b Moeen 29 Roach has enjoyed the freedom to attack when Moeen gives him some width but this one turns a little after gulling him in the flight so it catches the maker’s name on the drive and spoons to cover. If you want a catch taking, ask a bowler. FOW 156/7
OVER 52: WI 156/6 (Chase 57* Roach 29*)
Maiden from Wood, around the wicket. Just the leg bye. Would rewrite more but I lost the post in an over-hasty editing job and any road …
OVER 51: WI 155/6 (Chase 57* Roach 29*)
Roach flirts with danger again with a big forward press to Moeen. The ball catches the edge but it’s thick enough to take the ball wide of Stokes’s right hand as he tried to channel Mr Tickle and extend it far beyond its scope. Before Mark Wood’s next over, Jimmy Anderson calls him into a conclave.
OVER 50: WI 149/6 (Chase 56* Roach 24*)
Wood to Roach who jabs at the one that is speared into his body from wide of the crease but it flops off his glove short of Jennings. Wood strikes the gloves again as Roach raises his hands above his eyebrows to fend off a bouncer. The ball balloons behind, Bairstow at the full extent of his reach and leap, can only tip it over the bar for four. For the last ball of the over, Wood pulls out another venomous ball arrowed towards Roach’s throat that come soff the handle and falls 6ft short of third slip.
OVER 49: WI 145/6 (Chase 56* Roach 20*)
Moeen sneaks another shooter beneath Roach’s bat but once more the line saves the batsman as it was a ball’s width outside off-stump. Roach, frustrated, hits out and spoons a gilded chance to mid-off. Burns drops the dolly above his head. It bursts through his fingers. In the immortal words of Graham Taylor: What sort of thing is happening here?
OVER 48: WI 144/6 (Chase 56* Roach 19*)
Mark Wood begins the evening session with a man at bat-pad and a leg gully. He starts with a genuine loosener drifting on to Chase’s pads and he flicks it through midwicket for three. The pace cranks up and Roach, caught on the crease, pushes his bat outside off and sends the ball between third slip and gully at catchable height for four. Wood ends the over with an appeal for a legside strangle but the ball hit the thighpad and England wisely don’t bother to squander their remaining review. Moeen will continue from the other end.
TEA: WI 136/6 (Chase 53* Roach 14*)
England are three wickets from victory (Keemo Paul is not going to bat in a frivolous cause), West Indies are 349 short of their target. The second session had spills but fewer thrills than the morning but England have time to regroup and 2½ more hours today plus tomorrow if necessary.
OVER 47: WI 136/6 (Chase 53* Roach 14*)
No turn for Denly and Roach exploits some width to flog a drive through cover for four. Generally too short from Denly and the batsmen milk a couple of singles before they depart for rest and refreshment.
OVER 46: WI 130/6 (Chase 52* Roach 9*)
Fifty for Roston Chase who has played with heart and skill. He brings it up with a streaky drive that was uncharacteristic of his innings and it flies off the edge past third slip for four. Anderson adopts his milk-curdling pout. We will have one more over before tea.
OVER 45: WI 125/6 (Chase 48* Roach 8*)
Some pre-tea leg-spin from Denly. Chase dinks a single past the infield and Roach flogs a drive so close to the bowler’s dive that it trimmed his fingernails as he tried to catch it. Technical chance but he would have needed asbestos hands to pouch it. Instead he tips it round the post for four.
OVER 44: WI 119/6 (Chase 47* Roach 3*)
Anderson has the whole over at Roach who keeps him out pretty well and even smashes a cover drive for two. He also plays one of most look-at-me leaves we’ve seen for ages. A real flourish to the withdrawal of his bat before holding the pose, front knee bent.
OVER 43: WI 117/6 (Chase 47* Roach 1*)
Chase punches two off the back foot through cover and then works two off his pads through midwicket. It’s a very wide V indeed when you’ve grafted your way back into decent nick. Well played.
OVER 42: WI 112/6 (Chase 43* Roach 0*)
Chase uses the angle from Anderson, who went wide on the crease, to work the ball through the legside for two. Fir the rest of the over he demonstrates his intestinal fortitude with resolute defence and well judged leaves. He has batted very responsibly and looks better suited to umber three than Hope.
OVER 41: WI 110/6 (Chase 41* Roach 0*)
Dowrich picks the right ball to whack off Moeen again, flaying a drive over mid-on for four. The batsmen exchange singles before Moeen does for Dowrich with a beauty.
Dowrich c Stokes b Moeen 19 Terrific from Moeen who is giving it a rip. The ball lingers on the breeze, dips rapidly, grips on the pitch and spits up towards off-stump. It catches the edge of Dowrich’s bat and hits Bairstow’s pad which deflects it to slip where it hits Stokes in the chest before he clings on. FOW 106/6
OVER 40: WI 104/5 (Chase 40* Dowrich 14*)
This is the other end that Broad bowled from initially. It’s uphill but he has the wind at his back and hopefully less rock-hard footholds. Chase drives two through cover but Anderson is fretful and unhappy with something. Has the longer run-up – it’s about six yards more than the one he had used since 1998 – affected his rhythm?
OVER 39: WI 102/5 (Chase 38* Dowrich 14*)
Dowrich has batted with admirable abstemiousness so far but now tucks in, scything a square cut off Moeen’s drag down for two then takes a step back to the legside to arc a drive over the bowler’s head for four. Anderson is coming back on to replace Stokes. He bowled beautifully before lunch but struggled with his left ankle in the footholds after his dinner.
OVER 38: WI 95/5 (Chase 37* Dowrich 8*)
There are 35 minutes before tea. Stokes begins his seventh over and is banging most of them in. Dowrich tucks a single through square leg, Chase jabs one behind square as the ball arrows into his body and Dowrich mistimes a pull that comes off the toe for two.
OVER 37: WI 91/5 (Chase 36* Dowrich 5*)
Maiden for Moeen to Chase as the offie attempts to beguile the batsman with flight, drift and some dip. No turn, though.
OVER 36: WI 91/5 (Chase 36* Dowrich 5*)
Stokes has been enjoying himself today beginning with a jaunty innings this morning and some BAGA grade four gymnastics in the field afterwards. Now he’s bowling quickly and with an enforcer’s line and length. Dowrich whips a single to midwicket, Chase pushes one to cover.
OVER 35: WI 88/5 (Chase 35* Dowrich 4*)
Buttler leaps high and horizontally to his right with his right hand proud at short midwicket to try to cling on to Dowrich’s on drive. It will be added to the list of his drops for the series but had he held on it would have been on a par with this:
OVER 34: WI 85/5 (Chase 35* Dowrich 1*)
Stokes begins his eight-ball over with a no ball and a wide, a bouncer that sails over the batsman’s head. Dowrich breaks the egg with a pokey prod to point for a single. Chase whips two off his pads. One more wicket and England will expose the bunnies but we’ve been detained at this point many times in the past, particularly by wicketkeeper batsmen. None more galling than Ian Healy … unless it was Brad Haddin.
OVER 33: WI 80/5 (Chase 33* Dowrich 0*)
Chase slogs Moeen over midwicket for four, He didn’t hit it cleanly as he swivelled and opened his stance but he clobbered it with such force that it made it to the rope easily. Stokes is coming back to replace Wood.
OVER 32: WI 76/5 (Chase 29* Dowrich 0*)
Hetmyer is caught short trying to get back for three, which should have been on given Chase had slapped a filthy full toss down to third man. Denly had to make a lot of ground from backward point to gather, turn and throw. Hetmyer dawdled the first run and paid the price. Hetmyer smashes his bat on to the ground in self-disgust/remorse.
Hetmyer run out 19 Bullet throw from deep backward square (Denly) and Bairstow took it cleanly on the half volley and knocked over the stumps with Hetmyer 2ft short. FOW 76/5
OVER 31: WI 72/4 (Chase 27* Hetmyer 18*)
Moeen is bowling very well, using the breeze judiciously to make the batsmen’s nostrils flare and contemplate attacking shots. For now they hold their aggression in and settle for three singles. England want the umpires to change the ball but they refuse, erm, to play ball.
OVER 30: WI 69/4 (Chase 26* Hetmyer 16*)
Razor refkexes from Chase to keep out a grubber from Wood that sticks in the pitch. He can’t do anything against another, though, as it burrows beneath his panicky jab down but whistles past the stumps. Poor Chase is a magnet for them. At last he gets a ball that bounces at an orthodox height and he steers it off his hip past the dive of Jennings at short leg and they run two. Wood ends the over with his fastest ball of it, a yorker, that Chase manages to dig out.
OVER 29: WI 67/4 (Chase 24* Hetmyer 16*)
Chase slaps two through cover with a vertical bat off the back foot and then leans into a drive to push it to the same fielder off Moeen for a single.
OVER 28: WI 64/4 (Chase 21* Hetmyer 16*)
Wood begins with some slingers across Hetmyer who leaves a couple and lets them go down the legside until he receives one that was slightly overpitched and he flicks it for two down to square leg. A slow bouncer sails over Hetmyer’s head and is signalled wide, adding to this match’s unwanted record. The last ball sits up nicely even though it was quick and Hetmyer hooks it wide of the fielder but so uppishly that it should make the bowler salivate.
OVER 27: WI 59/4 (Chase 21* Hetmyer 12*)
Ben Stokes at slip for Moeen. Bairstow is chirping relentlessly as is Stokes, calling Moeen ‘Mo-zer’ and telling Chase to launch the ball on the wind. He ignores their advice and whips two through midwicket instead. Wood is coming back from the other end.
OVER 26: WI 55/4 (Chase 18* Hetmyer 11*)
Broad hits a crater/dried-in ball indentation outside off and the ball shoots through from back of a length, scooting under Chase’s bat as he improvised a rushed jab at it. Only a leg bye off the over, which comes off the final ball that was angled towards Chase’s pads and kept going. He missed out on the leg glance but his thigh pad did the business for him.
Just got this text from a non-cricket loving guitar tech friend. ‘As you know, I have little knowledge of cricket but I’m loving Joe Root. Good lad. I love his message.’ Good example of how brilliant moments like that crossover beyond the game to everyone x
— Felix White (@felixwhite) February 12, 2019
OVER 25: WI 54/4 (Chase 18* Hetmyer 11*)
England strangle their appeal when Hetmyer props forward to defend Moeen and snicks it into his pad. The two batsmen take singles to long on and long off so Root brings them up to try to cut off their release shot against the spinner.
OVER 24: WI 52/4 (Chase 17* Hetmyer 10*)
Hetmyer has a swish at a hook that sails over his shoulder. Broad stands and stares at him before shaking his head and marching back to his mark. Broad pitches the next one up and Hetmyer tucks it off his legs for a single. Chase demonstrates admirable discipline and technique to see out the rest of the over. Give Wood three overs. He has had a break for lunch so should be fresh after a day with his feet up. This is what he did to Hetmyer before they went off for their scran.
OVER 23: WI 51/4 (Chase 17* Hetmyer 9*)
Root throws Moeen the ball and Bairstow is straight into Hetmyer’s ear, wagering that he won’t be able to restrain himself from dancing down the pitch to tee off against the spinner. But whether it’s the goading or common sense, Hetmyer stays in his crease, watches the flight, covers the ball until he is given the opportunity to tap a drive to long on for a single.
OVER 22: WI 48/4 (Chase 16* Hetmyer 7*)
Hetmyer seems determined to have a dash and throws the bat indiscriminately at anything wide. He misses with another expansive drive and has to settle for a single with a more orthodox jab into the offside. Broad is bowling quicker than at any time on tour here, 88mph, but perhaps he’d be better sticking one up Hetmyer’s nose than asking him to RSVP outside off. Chase drills a square drive through point for two.
OVER 21: WI 45/4 (Chase 14* Hetmyer 6*)
The best of Chase as he leans into a cover drive and lashes it through the covers. Anderson is bowling for the drive, probing for the edge. It’s the rough before the smooth.
OVER 20: WI 41/4 (Chase 10* Hetmyer 6*)
Chase inside-edges a drive and canters a single as the ball squirts to square leg. Broad comes round the wicket to Hetmyer who defends competently for three balls then cannot resist throwing his hands through the line in an attempt to drive a wider one. He almost knocks himself off his feet with the force of the stroke that fortunately for him he misses.
OVER 19: WI 40/4 (Chase 9* Hetmyer 6*)
James Anderson takes the ball after lunch and after a couple of deliveries in which his left ankle pivots in the foothold during his followthrough he drops to his haunches to adjust a brace he is wearing. Chase turns a single off his pads and Hetmyer smacks a stand and deliver T20 straight drive back over Anderson’s head for four. Wood put the fear into Hetmyer but it’s going to be Stuart Broad next up.
LUNCH: WI 35/4 (Chase 8* Hetmyer 2*)
England, forecast rain aside, should wrap this up today. Wood took a couple of overs to hit his straps and is looking lethal and Jimmy Anderson is bowling like a dream. Given the series is gone for West Indies, they’ve got the dead-rubber shoulder shrugs and they’re a batsman light, two more wickets would let Wood feast on the rabbits Roach, Jospeh and Gabriel. If any afternoon showers are not protracted, all is set fair for a crushing victory. WI need another 450 to win.
OVER 18: WI 35/4 (Chase 8* Hetmyer 2*)
Chase is struck on the hands by a short-pitched brute from Wood that rears up and pins his fingers on the bat handle. Little wonder he does the universal dance of pain as he wags his hand. He takes himself up the other end with a tip and run into the legside and Wood has three balls at Hetmyer who, like Corporal Jack Jones’ foes, didn’t like it up him in the first innings. Wood forces him on to his back as the bouncer ramps up and Hetmyer takes ungainly evasive action but he survives the last ball with a solid block and the players troop off for lunch.
OVER 17: WI 34/4 (Chase 7* Hetmyer 2*)
Chase tucks a single off his front pad for a single after soundly defending four of Stokes’ deliveries giving Hetnyer one to face, which he covers with an angled bat.
OVER 16: WI 33/4 (Chase 6* Hetmyer 2*)
Wood’s pace is down from Sunday’s peak and he is having problems with the footholds. He draws Hope into a drive outside off, making him reach for it and the ball sails over point for four. But then Wood corrects his line and exposes Hope’s technical flaw, playing so far in front of his body while jerking his feet off the ground. Who but the best and bravest could blame the lad for not wanting to get hit, but it’s a flaw that can be exploited by the very quick. Hetmyer is off the mark first ball with a flick to midwicket off middle Wood fires it across the left-hander from round the wicket.
Hope c Broad b Wood 14 Can’t cope with a quick delivery fired into his body, so he jabs his bat at the ball to stop it hitting/hurting him, and takes his bottom hand off on evasive action, It forces the ball to spoon off the unstable blade and lob to cover. FOW 31/4
OVER 15: WI 27/3 (Hope 10* Chase 6*)
Almost a carbon copy of Chase’s first-dig dismissal when he stands on his toes to punch the ball in his stance without moving his feet. The ball skims the edge and jets past third slip who dives to his right but cannot reach it. Chase tells himself off, taps his helmet then gets back into line.
OVER 14: WI 21/3 (Hope 10* Chase 2*)
Shot! From Shai Hope off Mark Wood. He lets the ball come to him in the slot and smears a drive for four through extra. Not such an explosive start from Wood who is bowling at a fair lick but goes too short a couple of times either to intimidate or draw a false stroke.
OVER 13: WI 16/3 (Hope 4* Chase 2*)
The umpire loses his Panama to the wind at the moment that Stokes hits his delivery stride. It doens’t distract him as he defends on the back foot. What happens if he was out? asks Jeff Dujon. Can the umpire call dead ball after the fact? Where’s Tom Smith when you need him? A successive maiden for Stokes who is persistently probing that fifth stump line apart from the odd effort ball.
OVER 12: WI 16/3 (Hope 4* Chase 2*)
He hits his mark straight up, firing the first couple in at 88mph. Hope blocks the first hurriedly, lets the next one which skids through go by. Wood tries the bouncer next and Hope ducks beneath it and follows it up with the scripted tempter, pushed fuller and wider. Hope is gulled enough to chase it and flashes at it with hard hands but it keeps moving away from the bat and he survives. Hope jerks a defensive off middle and leg past Jennings at short leg and they run two.
OVER 11: WI 14/3 (Hope 2* Chase 2*)
Stokes has his first bowl of the match, having been used as a workhorse in Barbados and Antigua, and begins with a maiden. He makes the batsmen play at five of them and Chase is up to it. We’re going all Durham – Mark Wood will come on from the other end.
OVER 10: WI 14/3 (Hope 2* Chase 2*)
Broad is bowling well, getting the ball to move off the pitch and he even hits a crack which makes it veer crazily off course> Hope takes a single with a positive defensive into the infield and Chase punches one to cover. The groundstaff are mustered by the covers like David Steel’s Liberals.
OVER 9: WI 12/3 (Hope 1* Chase 1*)
Wood and Stokes are warming up theatrically, desperate for a bowl before it’s too late. They’re going to have to rip it out of Anderson’s mitt, though. Hope survives by the skin of his teeth when one bites into the teeth and spits past the edge. The wind is getting up and showers are forecast. Hope is off the mark from the 27th delivery he has faced with a flick off middle and leg for a single.
OVER 8: WI 11/3 (Hope 0* Chase 1*)
Huge appeal from Mark Wood at mid on when Broad’s leg-cutter nibbles in at Chase and strikes him on the right thighpad on its way into Bairstow’s gloves. His team-mates edge away from him in feat of being tainted by his embarrassment. Decent over from Broad but the two right-handers have so far been better at resisting the temptation to drive.
OVER 7: WI 11/3 (Hope 0* Chase 1*)
Chase avoids the king pair or golden spectacles and gets off the mark with a backward defensive squeezed past gully. Anderson’s new run-up, a touch longer not so high a jump in his delivery stride, pays immediate dividends.
Bravo c Root b Bravo 0 A Mike Yarwood impression of Campbell’s dismissal in terms of the stroke played – an airy, needless drive. The difference being that he, with a looser grip caused by his finger injury, nicks off to second slip rather than gully. FOW 10/3
OVER 6: WI 10/2 (Hope 0* Bravo 0*)
Buttler has been sent to hide from Broad down in the long pasture and Moeen takes his place at third slip. Broad has that high-stepping zip in his stride and bowling wobble seam, angling the ball into the right-hander. He plugs away on a good length and gradually cranks up his speed to 85mph.
OVER 5: WI 10/2 (Hope 0* Bravo 0*)
Bravo, with stitches in his burst finger, dampens the drama for a couple of balls with a pair of resolute attempts to get into line but then flashes at drives that zip past into Bairstow’s gloves. The breeze and seam movement are Anderson’s weapons of choice today and the batsmen cannot cope.
OVER 4: WI 10/2 (Hope 0* Bravo 0*)
Jos Buttler drops another chance off Stuart Broad at third slip, He got his hands to it at chest height after Hope played an daft, wafty, no foot movement drive. It was a dolly that hit him on the palm and was on the grass before he could wrap his fingers round. Give him the gloves or stick him at cover. Pan hands. Stokes pats him on the back. Broad looks like he’d like to shoot a man in Beausejour, just to watch him die.
OVER 3: WI 10/2 (Hope 0* Bravo 0*)
Anderson is devouring the batsmen on toast here. He beats Bravo four ways, first striking the pad followed by one that seams past the edge. Next up is a climber that explodes off a decent length and Bravo has to jack-knife his bat out of the way and then he catches him on the crease fending at one that jags away and was ya far from trimming his glove. Wicket maiden.
Bravo lbw b AndersonLooked a little high because Bravo was off his feet as he tried to glance it round the corner.
Brathwaite c Stokes b Anderson 8 Anderson, who took the rare opportunity while England batted for more than a session yesterday, to spend a couple of hours working in the nets, hits the sweet spot straight away, luring Brathwaite forward and nicking him off to second slip. Stokes drops his hands too soon and the ball strikes him on the left wrist but it pops back up tamely fro him to grasp. FOW 10/2
OVER 2: WI 10/1 (Brathwaite 8* Hope 0*)
Broad begins with some floaty filth angled into Brathwaite’s pads at 80mph and the opener tucks the second ball off his pads for three. Broad adjusts for Hope and hits the deck a bit harder, striking him on the pad, but too high, and enticing him into a tenatative prod outside off that whistles past the edge. Moeen, who took that stunner, fielded at fine leg for the second over.
OVER 1: WI 7/1 (Brathwaite 5* Hope 0*)
Anderson opens the bowling with three slips and a gully. Because it’s the start of an innings, we get Jerusalem again. Brathwaite, all loosey goosey, plays a punch away from his body and the ball sails between third slip and gully at chin height for four. Flukey but productive. He takes a single off the next ball with a tickle round the corner then Anderson bags Campbell for a golden duck when the opener imitates his partner with a no-footwork flash outside off. Root calls up a fourth slip and short leg for Hope. Anderson fancies pinning him and targets that big front pad for leg-before or a bat-pad catch but in doing so pushes it too far across and Hope takes two leg byes.
Campbell c Moeen b Anderson 0 Moeen takes a one-handed blinder at gully high to his right. Campbell was tempted into pushing forward, played down the wrong line and nicked off. It took a special catch to hang on to it because it flew. FOW 5/1
England have declared, giving themselves five sessions plus 84 minutes to bowl West Indies out. The nominal target the 10 fit batsmen will be chasing for a 3-0 victory is 485.
Root c Hetmyer b Gabriel 122 Full toss from Gabriel and Root, falling over a little to the offside, chips it to short midwicket. The wicket also brings the declaration. FOW 361/5
OVER 105: ENG 360/4 (Root 122* Stokes 47*)
Alzarri Joseph, who was wayward yesterday, comes round the wicket to Stokes and starts with a ball on a good length. Stokes swings hard again and slogs it over midwicket for four. Joseph adapts to a one-day line, pushing it wider and fuller to dry up the boundaries and from the following five balls they take three singles and a two. The one dot ball comes when Root, trying too hard to show his Big Bash licks, again tries to ramp an 85+mph bowler over his shoulder. ENG lead by 483
OVER 104: ENG 351/4 (Root 119* Stokes 41*)
Root flicks another single, this time off Gabriel, for a single down to fine leg. Stokes pulls one hard to the midwicket sweeper and Root, whose dentist must hate him, then tries to scoop Gabriel – at 88mph- over his shoulder by switching into a French cricket stance bending and laying down the bat as a ramp. Fortunately it misses bat and grille. Way to provoke, Gabriel, Joe. The last ball is on a good length and Root murders it through the covers with Pierrepoint’s professionalism.
OVER 103: ENG 345/4 (Root 114* Stokes 40*)
Root adds another with a glance into the legside. Stokes, who has his eye in, throws the lot at a cover drive that deserved four but was stopped by the fielder with hands that he has to wring. Roach follows up with a bouncer that trampolines over Stokes’ shoulder and his hook for four byes but the arc of his bat swing was not wasted because he mows the next ball into orbit, tonking it over midwicket for six.
OVER 102: ENG 334/4 (Root 113* Stokes 34*)
Shannon Gabriel, facing an ICC investigation for alleged homophobic sledging last night, opens the bowling at a slippery lick, touching 90mph. Stokes leans on to the back foot to play a backward defensive and is beaten all over the shop by one that rears up and sears away from the edge. A ball that defines ‘unplayable’. Stokes gets off strike with a leg-bye off his thigh pad as he missed a nudge round the corner but his respite is only for a ball after Root steers a dab down to third man. Interesting stats here from Cricinfo that put Jason Holder’s ban into some context:
OVER 101: ENG 332/4 (Root 112* Stokes 34*)
Roach opens the bowling with a ball 21 overs old. Root tucks a single off his hip, a staid prelude to Stokes charging on to the dancefloor like a wallflower at the end of a wedding at the first strains of Come on Eileen. He heaves a slog drive and carts the ball one-bounce for four past the bowler. The next is banged in, doesn’t get up, and Stokes controls his pull, getting on top of it to cuff it for a single. Root is treated to a wide and a vicious leaper off a good length which almost has him rubbing his hands in glee at the prospect of what his bowlers can evoke from this pitch. ENG lead by 455
Time for Jerusalem for the umpteenth time in the match. They’ve made it meaningless with repetition. Blake and Parry reduced to muzak. Well done everyone. Sound the flippin’ trumpets.
Shannon Gabriel update
Nick Hoult has the latest.
ICC officials in Dubai woke up this morning to reports of the alleged incident involving Gabriel during the third Test in St Lucia and after reviewing the footage are considering taking action with a charge likely by the end of play today.
And welcome to coverage of the fourth day’s play from St Lucia. West Indies, down a bowler and with the series won, produced lively spells yesterday morning and with the new ball but it was been England’s day. The focus has been on Joe Root for countering presumed homophobic abuse with such compassion and integrity. Nick Hoult will have more on the story imminently but lets us know that
The International Cricket Council will investigate the alleged homophobic comments made by West Indies fast bowler Shannon Gabriel to England captain Joe Root and are considering charging him under cricket’s code of conduct that covers incidents of personal abuse.
In terms of the game and where we are, Root, having not score a hundred between Aug 2017 and Sept 2018, has now made one in three successive series. But the key to England’s dominance, of how they turned the screw, has been the partnerships of 54 for the second wicket, 74 for the third, 107 for the fourth and 71* for the fifth. England lead by 448 and will probably look to have some fun for 90 minutes before declaring and unleashing Stuart Broad, James Anderson, Mark Wood and Moeen Ali. Darren Bravo will bat but we’re still unsure about Keemo Paul who, like Mr Spiggot – ‘Spiggot by name and Spiggot by nature’ – may be hopping around on one leg if called upon.
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