MANCHESTER – A final session collapse engineered by the second new ball proved disastrous for West Indies but seamer Kemar Roach struck two telling blows late on to set up a tantalising final day of the second Test at Old Trafford.
Cruising on 242 for four about half an hour after tea on Sunday’s penultimate day, West Indies capitulated to lose their last six wickets for 45 runs in the space of 101 deliveries, to tumble to 287 all out in their first innings.
Veteran seamer Stuart Broad, controversially omitted from last week’s opening Test in Southampton, proved his worth in gold, snapping up three wickets for just one run to end with three for 66.
All-rounder Chris Woakes claimed three for 42 while left-arm seamer Sam Curran supported with two for 70.
While they crucially avoided the follow-on, West Indies surrendered a hefty first innings lead of 182 but the hosts’ attempts to gather quick runs in the eight overs available were stymied as Roach bowled both Jos Buttler (0) and Zak Crawley (8), leaving England 37 for two at the close.
Heading into Monday’s final day, England lead by 219 runs, needing quick runs in order to give themselves enough time to bowl West Indies out and secure a series-levelling win.
There was no hint of a collapse when opener Kraigg Brathwaite top-scored with 75 and Shamarh Brooks stroked a polished 68, to underpin the Caribbean side’s reply to England’s massive 469 for nine declared.
Roston Chase chipped in with 51 in the middle order but was ninth out after helping West Indies past the follow-on of 270.
Resuming on 32 for one after losing the entire day to rain, West Indies denied England any success up front as Brathwaite and nightwatchman Alzarri Joseph extended their second wicket stand to 54 before being separated.
On 14 at the start, Joseph struck three fours in 32 off 52 balls to inspire the early momentum. Dropped in the third over of the morning off Woakes, he eventually perished to a sharp catch at short leg by Ollie Pope, trying to turn the second ball of off-spinner Dom Bess’s first spell.
Under pressure following a run of poor form, Shai Hope looked compact as he put on a further 53 for the third wicket with Brathwaite, to see West Indies to lunch on 123 without further loss.
Hope, with a career spiraling downward courtesy of an alarming average of 19 over the last two years, carved out five fours in his 71-ball knock.
He punched Curran to the cover boundary to get off the mark and followed up with another off-side boundary in the same over, the final one before the drinks break.
However, Hope failed to add to his lunch-time 25, flirting with the eighth ball he faced afterwards and nicking a catch behind off Curran, with West Indies still to increase their tally.
Brathwaite and Brooks then combined in a 76-run fourth wicket stand which kept England wicket-less throughout the next hour.
The right-handed Brathwaite, coming off a half-century at Southampton, looked in good touch as he struck eight fours off 165 deliveries.
He punched two sweetly-timed consecutive fours to cover off Woakes to be unbeaten on 41 at lunch, and reached his 19th half-century in the fourth over after the resumption when he drove Broad to the straight boundary.
The right-hander appeared set for a big innings when he got himself into a tangle and turned an innocuous delivery from seamer Ben Stokes back to the bowler, to depart in the final hour before tea.
Brooks exuded composure in a knock requiring 137 balls and including 11 fours, reaching his second Test half-century with tea approaching, as he put on 43 with Chase to ensure West Indies reached the interval on 227 for four.
Unbeaten on 60 at the break, Brooks perished nearly half-hour afterwards, playing around one from Broad in the second over with the second new ball, and his dismissal signalled the start of the Windies decline.
Jermaine Blackwood was bowled without scoring by one from Broad which kept low, Shane Dowrich was lbw to Broad courtesy of DRS also without scoring and captain Jason Holder edged Woakes to his opposite number Joe Root at first slip to fall for two, as four wickets tumbled for 10 runs.
Chase, given out lbw to Curran on 14 but reprieved by DRS, eked out precious runs for the Windies in a knock including seven fours from 85 balls before becoming one of two wickets to fall to Woakes in one over.
ENGLAND 1st innings 469 for nine decl.
WEST INDIES 1st Innings
(overnight 32 for one)
K Brathwaite c and b Stokes *75
J Campbell lbw b Curran *12
A Joseph c Pope b Curran *32
S Hope c wkp Buttler b Curran *25
S Brooks lbw b Broad *68
R Chase lbw b Woakes *51
J Blackwood b Broad *0
+S Dowrich lbw b Broad *0
*J Holder c Root b Woakes *2
K Roach not out *5
S Gabriel b Woakes *0
Extras (b1, lb12, w2, nb2) *17
TOTAL (all out, 99 overs) *287
Fall of wickets: 1-16 (Campbell), 2-70 (Joseph), 3-123 (Hope), 4-199 (Brathwaite), 5-242 (Brooks), 6-248 (Blackwood), 7-252 (Dowrich), 8-260 (Holder), 9-287 (Chase), 10-287 (Gabriel)
Bowling: Broad 23-7-66-3 (w1), Woakes 21-10-42-3, Curran 20-4-70-2, Bess 21-3-67-1, Root 1-0-0-0, Stokes 13-3-29-1 (nb2).
ENGLAND 2nd innings
B Stokes not out *16
+J Buttler b Roach *0
Z Crawley b Roach *11
*J Root not out *8
Extras (lb1, nb1) *2
TOTAL (2 wkts, 8 overs) *37
Fall of wickets: 1-0 (Buttler), 2-17 (Crawley)
Bowling: Roach 4-0-14-2, Gabriel 4-0-22-0.
Position: England lead by 219 runs with eight second innings wickets intact.
Toss: West Indies.
Umpires: Michael Gough, Richard Illingworth; TV – Richard Kettleborough.