Sunday, 10 February 2019

ST. Lucia - Day Two

I only care about one football team and they lost today.  I will forget that and immediately switch the cricket on so I can enjoy watching two attacking batsmen stretch England's lead...
It didn't really go to plan.  West Indies quartet bowled superbly, England lose 6/46 to find themselves all out for 277.  This seems a decent score on this pitch (but it should/could have been much better!), how good it is remains to be seen, over to Broad and Anderson, will they cheer me up?

Meanwhile, at Twickenham England are 30-8 at half time against France.  At least one sport out of three is going well!

Three overs before lunch are tidy but England don't seem to carry the same threat.  There is an exchange caught on TV where Jimmy is positioning the fielder but Root keeps over ruling.  Why doesn't our puppy dog captain let England's greatest bowler set his own field???

Back after lunch and the West Indies openers are looking comfortable, Campbell is making it look easy...  I have to go out for a couple of hours and follow the cricket on my phone via Crincinfo.  What do I see?  Ali is bowling with a relatively new ball?  WTF?  This I can't understand??  However Ali takes two wickets in as many balls and both openers are gone 57/2!  What do I know? Mark Wood comes on at the other end it seems he is bowling seriously rapid, 95mph!  He then takes two in two and WI have fallen to 59/4!!!!  Before I get home Wood adds another wicket and the stats say he is the quickest bowler on either side.  At tea West Indies are 74/5.  For all the skill of England's senior bowlers, it's the raw pace of Wood that has turned this match in our favour!

Back home for a delicious roast dinner then back in front of the cricket.  Wood removes Bravo for his fourth wicket.  Keemo Paul is wafting the bat but he can't last, Ali has him stumped 107/7.  The game meanders for a bit, Dowrich is batting well and Roach is keeping England out.  Then Broad comes on and traps Dowrich LBW with a brilliant leg cutter.  Broad is in the action soon after with a brilliant one handed catch off Ali and West Indies are nine down.  Wood is brought back and with his second ball cleans up Gabriel to finish with test best figures of 5/41 and West Indies are all out for 154, the lead is 123.  What a day of cricket!

With sixteen wickets falling so far it's hard to imagine England's dodgy openers surviving a tricky evening session but somehow they do, in fact they look more comfortable in this session than any other so far this series.  The day ends at 19/0, England lead by 142, that was a good day!

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