England in West Indies: Joshua Da Silva hits fifty as he shepherds tail beyond England’s score | Cricket News

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Chris Woakes takes 3-48 to help reduce West Indies to 95-6 in response to England’s first innings 204 all out; Joshua Da Silva (54no) brings up fourth Test fifty shortly before stumps as he and the tail secure the hosts a 28-run lead by stumps

Last Updated: 25/03/22 10:06pm

The West Indies tail saw the team beyond England's first-innings score of 204 on day two in Grenada

The West Indies tail saw the team beyond England’s first-innings score of 204 on day two in Grenada

The West Indies tail wagged in a similar way that England’s did on the first evening as the hosts earned themselves a 28-run advantage¬†when closing¬†day two of the third Test in Grenada on 232-8.

England had reduced the West Indies to 95-6 after a three-wicket burst from Chris Woakes (3-48) after lunch, but as the pitch began to flatten out, Joshua Da Silva (54no) first added 49 for the eighth wicket with Alzarri Joseph (28) and then an unbroken 55 for the ninth with Kemar Roach (25no) to see the home side beyond England’s score.

In the final flourishes of the day, the visitors claimed the second new ball but with their pace attack flagging, Da Silva brought up a fourth Test fifty with a terrific whipped four through midwicket as the runs flowed late in the day.

England seamers lack threat with new ball

The tourists, having been bowled out for 204 to close out day one – Jack Leach (41no) and Saqib Mahmood (49) sharing in a 90-run last-wicket stand after they’d suffered their own middle-order collapse – started the day poorly as Kraigg Brathwaite (17) and John Campbell (35) safely negotiated the threat of the new ball putting on a fifty partnership.

England’s seamers failed to carry the same threat as the West Indies quicks from the day before, guilty of bowling too wide and not finding the right length on the livelier surface prepared for the series decider. But Ben Stokes (2-40), as is so often the case, stepped up and bagged the first wicket, getting one to keep low and pin Brathwaite in front.

The visitors, buoyed by the breakthrough, suddenly sparked into life and struck twice more in as many overs before the lunch interval, Shamarh Brooks (13) falling to Mahmood (1-39) in much the same manner as Brathwaite, and Campbell gloving a Craig Overton (2-71) delivery down the legside after being unsettled by a sustained spell of short-pitched bowling in which he was twice struck on the helmet.

Short-ball tactic works for Woakes

Chris Woakes celebrates one of his wickets in the afternoon session on day two of the third Test in Grenada

Chris Woakes celebrates one of his wickets in the afternoon session on day two of the third Test in Grenada

Overton’s spell had given England a blueprint of sorts to follow and Woakes adopted it accordingly after the interval, bouncing out Nkrumah Bonner (4) and Jason Holder (0) in the same over, before adding Jermaine Blackwood (18) later in the spell, getting the benefit of the doubt on a marginal lbw call.

It left the West Indies teetering on 95-6, still some 109 runs in arrears, but the final four wickets proved much tougher for the tourists to prize out as the pitch deadened and the ball got older. Kyle Mayers (28) and Joseph capitalised, playing a couple of enterprising cameos to compliment Da Silva dropping anchor at the other end, though both ultimately perished to loose strokes.

Da Silva fifty and stubborn tail frustrates England

Stokes again had the golden touch as Mayers tamely chipped one straight to Mahmood at mid-on just before tea, while Joseph was the only wicket to fall in the final session as he toe-edged a nick behind when lining up a wild swing at Overton.

England, growing increasingly frustrated, beat Roach’s outside edge on multiple occasions late in the day but crucially couldn’t find the edge, while Da Silva grew in confidence against an increasingly weary attack and brought up a richly-deserved and potentially crucial half-century shortly before the close.

West Indies and England will resume the third Test at 2pm UK time on Saturday. Follow over-by-over text commentary from 1.45pm on skysports.com and the Sky Sports app.

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