Stunning Stokes Shows The Way
Day two was a tale of much of England’s recent cricketing history – Ben Stokes at the forefront of a charge to success. This time it was a stunning Stokes century that put England in complete control of the second Test.
England resumed day two on 59* Stokes, along with batting partner Dom Sibley who was 86* overnight. They looked to further press home the advantage that they earned through sheer hard work on day one.
With a little help from more wayward West Indies bowling early on, the hosts moved into a position of dominance quickly. Both players brought up their hundreds soon after lunch, the adhesive Sibley had found it more difficult to build up a head of steam. In usual Stunning Stokes fashion, the Durham all-rounder went to his century with a reverse sweep off the bowling of Roston Chase.
WI Fight Back After Stunning Stokes & Sturdy Sibley
Stunning Stokes. Sturdy Sibley.
Both men looked to accelerate the scoring more than ever after reaching their personal landmarks. Sibley finally fell with the score on 341, a less than conventional stroke bringing about his downfall. Chase picked up his third wicket of the innings.
Ollie Pope came and went quickly as England attempted to move the game forwards. Stokes by this point was almost playing a shot a ball. Eventually, it was one shot too many as he was caught behind attempting to reverse sweep Kemar Roach. Bringing to an end a wonderful 176, from the man who has quickly become England’s main asset.
Useful lower-order runs from Jos Buttler, who needed them, and Dom Bess followed. Stuart Broad and Dominic Bess then stitched together a useful partnership. However, at 469-9, Joe Root decided that the runs were already enough on a tough pitch. He declared the innings and called his men back in.
A New New-Ball Pairing?
It was a new look new-ball partnership, as Stuart Broad and Chris Woakes took about making early inroads into the tourists’ batting line up. However, it was Sam Curran who made the breakthrough in his first over, trapping John Campbell lbw, given out after a review from Joe Root.
Nightwatchman Alzarri Joseph joined Kraigg Brathwaite to see out the remaining overs. The former played some less than defensive shots as he made his way to a brisk 14 before the close.
Day 3 Preview
The West Indies will have their work cut out for them for the remainder of this Test match. At 32-1 at the close of day two, the visitors are a colossal 437 behind with nine wickets in hand. England will go in the pursuit of early wickets tomorrow, in the hope of enforcing a follow on and perhaps inflicting an innings victory.
One saving grace for the Windies may be the weather forecast. Tomorrow could see major interruptions to play and may perhaps take too much time out of the match from an England perspective.
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