ENGLAND TOUR OF WEST INDIES 2018-19
Cricbuzz Staff •
Windies bowlers made good use of the assistance on offer in St. Lucia © Getty
England lost their way yet again after getting dented thrice in the post-lunch session on the opening day in St. Lucia. Resuming from 46/1, England lost the wickets of Rory Burns, Joe Denly and skipper Joe Root in an eventful session, to be placed at 114/4, needing a resurrection act post Tea to finish the day on a positive note.
England were gifted a few runs to start with that helped them push the rate but with the wicket offering plenty to the seamers, the batsmen were always on their toes. The patience was rewarded when Keemo Paul struck again to ensure Windies do not miss Jason Holder the bowler.
A full delivery moving slightly away rapped Burns on the pads and was initially given not out. Windies had to challenge the decision and overturn it in their favour after missing one marginally before lunch. One wicket brought another as six balls later, it was the turn of Shannon Gabriel to get into the wickets column.
Pitching on and around off, the ball jagged back in sharply to once again hit the batsman flush on his pads and this time, the finger did go up. Denly though, took a poor call to challenge the decision and took a review alongside him back to the pavilion. Jos Buttler fetched a couple of streaky boundaries to get going but Root at the other end was extra cautious and took 20 deliveries to finally get off the mark. Root’s confidence grew when he drove one through extra cover but the pacers continued to cause problems along the way.
Buttler and Root then punished two short balls to add to their boundaries tally and the partnership finally gave England some hope of making a recovery. But just before the break, England were handed a massive blow when Root played a poor stroke to get dismissed. He chased a short and wide delivery, only to edge it behind as the Windies seized control. It will be interesting to see what sort of an approach the likes of Buttler, Ben Stokes and Moeen Ali employ with the bowlers being on top predominantly.
Brief scores: England 114/4 (Rory Burns 29; Keemo Paul 2-21) vs Windies