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The dominant English continued their stranglehold over the visiting West Indies team to canter to a comfortable 9 wicket win in the second test at Nottingham and with it take an unassailable 2-0 lead in the 3 match Test series. Resuming from a catastrophic overnight position of 61-6, the Windies managed to carve out 165, thereby securing a marginal lead of 107 runs. The hero for West Indies was once again Marlon Samuels, who notched up a fighting unbeaten 76 to add a semblance of respectability to the innings. James Anderson and Tim Bresnan collected 4 wickets apiece and simplified the job for the England batsmen. Chasing 108, England romped home by 9 wickets and with a day to spare. Captain Andrew Strauss (45) and Alastair Cook (43*) linked up a typically rock-solid 89 run opening partnership before Strauss fell prey to an uppish cover drive. Finally, Cook and Trott (13*) saw the home team past the finish line. This series victory also meant the England would retain their prestigious No.1 Test ranking ahead of the tour to South Africa later this summer.
England moved two wickets closer to wrapping up the series against the West Indies, but were kept at bay for the lion share of the first session on Day 4 by Marlon Samuels, who followed up his century in the first innings with a battling half-century in the second. At lunch on Day 4, the West Indies had added another 80 runs to their dismal overnight score of 61/6 to open go ahead by 83 runs in this match.
As a result of having conceded a 58 run first innings lead, the Windies were effectively 3 runs for 6 wickets heading into Day 4. Marlon Samuels and Darren Sammy, who had shared a record 204 run partnership in the first innings needed to perform some heroics again today to dig the West Indies out of a massive hole. The duo started the day well, adding 49 runs for the 7th wicket before Skipper Sammy became the 5th leg before victim of the innings with Tim Bresnan picking up his fourth wicket. It was a close call that was upheld by the Tv Umpire, with hawkeye indicating that the ball would clip the bails. It was a disappointing end for Sammy, who had contributed a useful 25, as the decision could easily have gone the other way.
Kemar Roach came in at no.8 and hung around briefly, contributing 14 before also falling leg before, this time to Jimmy Anderson. The on-field umpire on this occasion, Asad Rauf gave the decision in favour of the West Indies, but was overturned using hawkeye with the ball clearly going on to smash into the stumps.
In between the two dismissals, Samuels brought up his half-century, a patient knock from a top quality player. The West Indies needed him to try and scrape together another 50-60 runs with two very capable tailenders in Shane Shillingford and Ravi Rampaul to give them a fighting chance in this contest.
The lion-hearted Samuels, armed with unflappable concentration carried on the good work to frustrate the diligent English bowlers. Shillingford, known to be a dogged lower order batsman decided to put a huge price on his wicket. However, his 21 ball stay came to an end when Swann undid his counterpart with a slightly quicker one with the ever reliable James Anderson snapping up a fine catch at first slip. Falling short of partners, Samuels switched to the top gear. He beheaded Swann, whipping 16 runs in the 60th over. Moments later, Anderson got rid of Rampaul (0) to bring the curtains down on the West Indian second innings. If it had not been for Samuels' rearguard action once again, the visitors would have never acquired the eventual slender lead of 107 runs.
Following 23 dot balls, Alastair Cook opened England's account via a gentle push through the cover region. Andrew Strauss soon got into his element with a couple of well-controlled pull shots and authentic drives. Tight in defence and impervious to distraction, the left handed pair settled down nicely. Another stand-out feature of the alliance was the alertness in between the wickets. The Windies' pacers did not bowl badly; England handled them exceptionally well.
Cook welcomed the off-spinner Shane Shillingford into the attack by means of an expertly placed cut shot. The Poms stamped their authority on the West Indies, showing why they were the No:1 Test side. Chasing 108, the hosts headed to the tea-break, unscathed at 74-0.
Expectedly, Strauss and Cook went about their business in impressive fashion. Against the run of play, Samuels consumed the English skipper in the 4th over post tea to offer a bit of cheer to the West Indian fans. Ironically, Strauss (45) perished to his favorite extra-cover drive.
Cook (43*) and one drop batsman Jonathan Trott (13*) completed the formalities and guided the Poms to an emphatic 9 wicket win.
The West Indians have illustrated application and determination to shine in patches. The bowlers have put in a work-man like effort only to let their inexperienced top order batsmen throw the game away. The riposte illustrated by Marlon Samuels and Darren Sammy is bound to rekindle the hopes in the land of Calypso. The challenge for this young side will be to master consistency and reclaim lost pride when they collide with England in the third and final Test which kick-starts on June 7th at Brimingham. In the interim, Sammy's soldiers will meet Leicestershire in a 2 day affair. The Poms, meanwhile will guard against complacency and will go all out to whitewash the Windies.
England: A Strauss (c), A Cook, J Trott, K Pietersen, I Bell, J Bairstow, M Prior (wk), T Bresnan, S Broad, G Swann, J Anderson.
West Indies: A Barath, K Powell, K Edwards, D Bravo, S Chanderpaul, M Samuels, D Sammy (c), D Ramdin (wk), R Rampaul, K Roach, S Shillingford.
West Indies 1st Innings 370 all out (109.2 overs, 3.38rpo)
M Samuels 117 (261) T Bresnan 4-104
D Sammy 106 (156) G Swann 2-62
England 1st innings 428 all out (123.4 overs, 3.46rpo)
A Strauss 141 (303) R Rampaul 3/75
K Pietersen 80 (114) M Samuels 2/14
West Indies 2nd innings 165 all out (60.1 overs, 2.74 rpo)
M Samuels 76*(160) T Bresnan 4-37
D Sammy 25(49) J Anderson 4-43
England 2nd Innings 108-1 (30.4 overs, 3.52 rpo)
A Strauss 45(72) M Samuels 1-14
A Cook 43*(86)
England won by 9 wickets
File Photograph Copyright: Barry Zee
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- 30/05/2012 21:15 - Injured Kemar Roach to return home
- 29/05/2012 08:10 - West Indies coach Gibson hails Samuels, Sammy