Recent Match Report – England vs West Indies 3rd Test 2021/22
Lunch West Indies 297 (da Silva 100*) advance England 204 by 93 tracks
Joshua Da Silva converted his 54 overnight into an outstanding, game-changing 100, the first century of his Test career, as England bowlers’ troubling toothlessness played out in dramatic and potentially startling style the third morning. in Granada.
By lunch, West Indies’ lead had grown from a slender 28 to a sizable 93, with Da Silva and Jayden Seales adding 52 for the tenth wicket in a brilliantly hard-fought display that only ended with a delayed interval, when Joe Root landed a Seales comeback for 13, also the highest score of his own career.
And seeing as England managed to drop eight wickets before dropping that figure in their first innings, the prospect of a hairy afternoon awaits them when their turn comes at bat.
For Da Silva, however, it was the proudest morning of his Testing career, and the historic moment also unfolded in thrilling style, with back-to-back limits off Craig Overton, the latter a fierce slap from the back foot through long- as he gave himself legroom and immediately roared in triumph as he raised both fists to the sky.
A ball later, his innings appeared to have ended with a fine fightback from Overton, as the ball leapt off the bridge and passed through the keeper via an apparent inside edge. But in wacky scenes that instead summed up England’s frustrations, Da Silva was already walking off the pitch for handshakes, only to be called back after his speculative use of the review showed he hadn’t touched the ball and that the only deviation had occurred. his thigh.
After resuming 232 for 8 overnight, West Indies had added 13 largely quiet runs in the first 20 minutes before Saqib Mahmood made the first incision of the day – once again from a length back delivery as Kemar Roach, yet to add to his 25 nights, closed out a push in the ribs and found a thin tickle down the side of the leg at Ben Foakes.
This could have been the cue for a similar approach to hitting the deck for the rest of the innings. However, any expectation of a quick conclusion was dashed outright by the steadfast Da Silva, who had made a trio of 30s in the first two Tests in Antigua and Barbados, and has now found a steady pace from the start for continue to chivvy West Indies. ‘ in total.
He did, however, have a few first moments of discomfort. On the 65 he received an lbw as Chris Woakes targeted a fuller, straighter length, but the decision was overturned due to an inside edge, and Da Silva had not added to his total when, a plus Later, Woakes pinned him on the lower hand with a pusher, a blow that required a few visits from the physical therapist.
Not for the first time, however, England’s bowlers found themselves guilty of providing too much width with the ball still new – aged just six overs when the day’s play began. And when they aimed harder, it was usually on more floaty length, as shown by Woakes who was shoved to the ground beautifully by Da Silva for the first boundary of the day.
With No.11 Seales in his sights, Mahmood arched his back in a spirited move that should by right have wrapped up the innings. First he fired into a bouncer who tipped late into the batter as he took evasive action, then in the same over Seales was pinned in front of the stump and reportedly ruled lbw during the exam. However, England had burned all their lifelines in their frustration on the second night, and to make matters worse the ball deflected past the diving Foakes for four assists.
But just as had been the case with England’s tenth wicket stand on day one, the unfussy persistence only heightened the bowling team’s frustrations. As the drinks approached, England were forced to turn once again to hardworking Ben Stokes, his knees creaking after his unexpected workload in this series, but even his best efforts could not be implemented, as Seales swooped a lap pusher. the wicket through a breach in the cord and away for four.
England’s stint on the pitch had topped 100 overs when Da Silva decided it was time to take on Jack Leach, with an ambitious slap on the bowler’s head for a four-man rebound just inside rope. For the most part, however, he was content to bide his time and lead the strike, reasonably safe, knowing that only an error in judgment was likely to dislodge either man against a particularly uninspired attack.
With 20 minutes remaining in the session, Stokes almost extracted that mistake, however, as Seales leaned into a clip on the side of the wicket-turn leg, and mounted a chance towards Leach halfway through – but he didn’t. couldn’t react quickly enough as he sprawled forward with the ball out of his reach.
Craig Overton, the last of the England Rapids to get an out, was called off with ten minutes before the nominal lunch break, and began bombarding Seales with short balls around the wicket – a tactic England probably should have adopt several times. earlier, but which in this case only lasted two overs before Root decided to bring his own backlash into the attack.
In response, Da Silva decided it was time to attack Leach – and he almost paid the price with his first hack across the line, but Foakes behind the stumps couldn’t collect as his toe popped out momentarily from the fold. His follow-up kick also nearly swung to square leg, but Da Silva had found his reach at the end of the plus, with a pair of gently stomped fours – through the covers and past square leg – to walk the years 90 for the second time in his career.
And as if emboldened by his lead partner’s increased stake, Seales broke his reluctance to drill Leach high and handsome for a long time for the top six of his career, and move into double digits for the first time. too. By then, England’s frustrations had been heightened by an extra half hour on the pitch – an automatic adjustment when teams at bat are down to nine, but not usually encountered after a nearly two-hour partnership. In the end, they only used 18 before the innings ended. But the whole session felt like purgatory for Root’s men.
Andrew Miller is ESPNcricinfo’s UK editor. @miller_cricket