Determines Windies Take Control With A Vital 85-run Lead > Cricket News, cricinfo, mobilecric, cricbuzz, livescore and more
Cricket news - Determined Windies take control with vital 85-run lead
A patient batting effort saw Windies claim a crucial 85-run first-innings lead over England at stumps on Day 2 of the second Test in Antigua. Even though England, and Stuart Broad in particular, created some chances and some half-chances, sloppy fielding meant most of them were put down, adding to the team's woes.
Kraigg Brathwaite was the common denominator in both the half-century stands that set up Windies for the first-innings lead. He extended his partnership with fellow opener John Campbell to 70 and later added 63 runs for the second-wicket stand with Shai Hope. England's brief resurgence in the hour after the Lunch, led by Moeen Ali and Broad, was nipped in the bud with another half-century partnership on either side of the second new ball, this time between the in-form Shane Dowrich and a determined Darren Bravo, as Windies snatched control back.
If the 21 fruitless overs on the opening day weren't enough, openers Brathwaite and Campbell continued exactly from where they'd signed off last evening to add to England, Broad and James Anderson's frustration. A dramatic first hour in the morning saw Campbell surviving a caught behind decision upon review when it had deflected off his elbow, and then getting another reprieve as Jos Buttler made a hash of a sitter in third slip. All for his luck to eventually run out when three shy of what would have been his maiden half-century.
The battle between the Windies opener and Broad resumed on the second morning with the English pacer managing to trouble the left-hander more than a couple of times. Campbell, however, chose only the bad balls to collect his runs and reset his individual best score to 47 before edging first-change bowler Ben Stokes to Buttler, again, at second slip.
Hope's arrival helped Windies innings pick up some pace in the second half of the morning session while Brathwaite continued with the same defiance on the tricky pitch. The pair ran well between wickets - converting the twos to threes and even running four once to punish England for their lethargic fielding. Hope brought the deficit down to double-digits with a picturesque cover drive off Sam Curran while Brathwaite raised the team hundred with a boundary to long-off three overs later to claim the morning session where they added 96 runs for only one wicket.
The hour after Lunch belonged to England, with Moeen and Broad picking up a couple of wickets each to keep their side alive in the contest. Unbeaten on 48 at the break, Brathwaite became the second batsman to miss out on a fifty when he inside edged one to Keaton Jennings at FSL to give England a breakthrough and Moeen his first wicket. Even as Hope continued briefly with similar flair - driving and pulling the off-spinner for back to back boundaries, luck finally shone on Broad who had also been let down by his own teammates' fielding errors.
Broad inflicted serious damage in the space of four deliveries - getting Hope to nick a legcutter behind to the 'keeper six short of his fifty, and then knocking over Roston Chase one ball after he had managed to open his account with a lucky third-man boundary.
Shimron Hetmyer, like most others in Windies' innings, was reprieved early off the bowling of Anderson, got a boundary immediately after and then tried to take the attack to Moeen. He managed to pull the offspinner to deep midwicket but took the bait off the flighted delivery next and miscued his slog in the deep where an infuriated Anderson pulled off a blinder.
That brought the in-form Dowrich to the crease, and together with Bravo he weathered the storm until Tea. The duo picked up some useful boundaries and helped Windies end the session 25 runs ahead.
Well into the final session the pitch continued to play tricks and Windies were reminded twice in quick succession that it still had plenty of life in it - first when Broad sent Dowrich on his way back, undone by an unplayable delivery much like how Joe Root fell last afternoon, and then, couple of overs later in his spell, when a nasty delivery rammed into Bravo's forearm.
The visitors had earlier reviewed an LBW shout only to find out that the ball was hitting Bravo way outside of his leg-stump. The left-hander went on to carve an uncharacteristically dogged innings - an unbeaten 33 of 165 - to not let the advantage slip away from the hosts while his skipper Jason Holder, fresh off an unbeaten double-century, treated the new ball with due respect and took a dozen deliveries to open his account with a brace. Together the pair batted out 19 overs, saw off the new ball and put their team in firm control with the invaluable lead.
Brief scores: Windies 272/6 (Kraigg Brathwaite 49, John Campbell 47, Shai Hope 44; Stuart Broad 3-42, Moeen Ali 2-54) lead England 187, by 85 runs.
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