If one thing defined today, it was missed opportunities. Both teams were rueing missed DRS reviews, drops and misfields which, had they been taken, could have put them in the driving seat for this game.
The day started with the West Indies in the box seat after Day 2. They were already 71 runs ahead with only 5 wickets down (including a nightwatchman), and they had the chance to put England in an impossible situation with the bat. Jimmy Anderson put paid to that idea in the first two balls of the day, taking two wickets. If you were going to be critical, which would probably be harsh to Shai Hope in particular who amassed 147 runs the day before, both balls were short and wide enough to be left.
Immediately the momentum had swung towards England, West Indies going from 329/5 to 329/7 in two balls and they would be lucky to stretch their lead much past 100. They had that stroke of luck when Moeen Ali dropped an incredibly simple chance to dismiss Jermaine Blackwood from Broad’s bowling in the next over. This drop allowed the West Indies to bat through the rest of the session, and by Lunch they had increased their lead to 169.
England’s innings started with an unusual change of pace, with Stoneman looking more dangerous and fluent than the more experienced Cook. Together they posted the first 50 partnership for this duo, and only the second of this summer for England, before Cook edged a ball from Holder to the wicketkeeper. With the West Indies now feeling on top, Stoneman and Westley did well to survive until Tea.
In the first over of the evening session, Jason Holder managed to get the ball to cut into Mark Stoneman, hitting him on the hand and dislocating his finger. The England physio ‘relocated’ it (I suggest you don’t look at the photos), and Stoneman continued. Shortly after that, Westley was lucky to survive a run-out when he was ballwatching whilst Stoneman was running for a second, with only Bishoo’s failure to safely gather the ball saving him. Westley didn’t manage to cash in however, instead choosing to chase a wide swinging ball in the next over but edging it to the keeper.
Stoneman was bowled by Shannon Gabriel soon after, although replays suggested that Gabriel was lucky not to have conceded a front foot no ball with perhaps just the smallest fraction of his boot behind the line. Perhaps. This brought in Dawid Malan, who was fortunate to survive early on when he got a very faint edge which wasn’t given out on the field and the West Indies elected not to review. Clearly Dawid Malan is a shit bloke. A few overs later they spurned another chance, as Kyle Hope dropped a sliced shot from Joe Root which went right at him at gully. Root also survived being given out LBW after he reviewed the decision, as well as an unsuccessful LBW review by Holder.
The strangest cricket was left for the end though. In the penultimate over of the day, the West Indies’ specialist spinner Bishoo was brought out for what was only his second over of the day. This seems a particularly odd decision when England’s frailties against spin bowling are considered. Following that, the final over from Shannon Gabriel began with two wides, one of which also went for 4, and a no ball. These free runs meant that England finished the day leading by 2 runs with 7 wickets remaining.
For anyone keeping count, there were 6 overs short today, as well as 5 on the first day. I know a lot of people don’t care, but it bugs me that Stokes will likely be banned for swearing a few times whilst there’s no punishment for not fulfilling a fairly basic requirement of the game. I wrote a post here recently about it, which I’d love you to read and comment on even if you disagree.
As always, comments welcome below.
Fwiw I was impressed by what I saw of Stoneman. He looked calm and relaxed, left the wide balls and put away the loose ones. What more do you want from an opener? In fact, he looked like the senior partner because Cook was his usual fidgety self at the crease. You would think that Stoneman was the guy with 11000 runs.
Several things about Holder’s captaincy puzzled me. It was a sunny day. Gabriel seemed to be struggling for rhythm and Roache was not fired up. Holder was the horse for the course, rather like those guys whom Atherton regularly berates, such as Neil Malinder. Hardly one ball from him went straight through. He was getting bounce and movement where his colleagues were not. So why did he not bowl himself more? Gabriel’s last over was extraordinary in all the wrong ways. Why wasn’t Holder bowling? Similarly, why is Bishoo in the team? I saw a surprising stat that shows that Cook has a better record against leggies than offies but this makes no sense. I remember him getting out to Steve Smith, of all people. So why give him 2 overs and let the totally un threatening Roston Chase bowl so much? Yes he was tidy but that was because he was bowling 2 feet outside off stump into the rough against left-handers, a means of attack that makes it almost impossible to take a wicket
Only caught C5 highlights today.
They’re propaganda-ing Cook too:
“Cricket is remembering the birthday of…” the don…”he set so many records on this ground, …highest score…highest run chase…and guess who the man (pan to St Ali) who has the most Test runs here of them all? Yeah – same guy, Sir Donald Bradman.”
Still really enjoy seeing Cook get out.
Dome-head (what is it with Middlesex bowlers turned “journalists”?) THE Analyst in his over-sized clothes and shoes, showing how Stoneman’s (“Cook’s 12th opening partner since the retirement of Strauss in 2012” – just rolls of the tongue these days) technique is improving. The technique THE Analyst uses to demonstrate is just embarrassing. The rest of the analysis is fine but why do we need to see him on screen when his technique is crap? And why do we have to be reminded that Stoneman is Cook’s 12th partner?
The calling of “ROOOOT” for each boundary is boorish and boring. It also sounds shit: a bit like “no surrender to the ira” in football. Just makes me cringe.
Whilst I’m having a rant, please can England players wear either white OR cream? What’s wrong with them and where are their image advisors? A mixture of both looks horrible.
Finally, it’s true: catches win matches.
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Decent amout of play in Dhaka until the luck in dodging the inevitable showers eventually ran out.
It would be nice to see the BCB prepare a decent wicket and not one that rags from day one while hoping to win the toss for a change.
“Yeah, but those KFC-fattened millionaires should get better at dealing with spin…. play it better… bowl it better….” etc.
True, but…. Bangladesh are a good enough team at home not to need to load the dice like this. I’d like to see their batsmen play the proper Test innings I know they’re capable of, rather than thrashing a quick match-winning 70.
Still, as long as countries are allowed to get away with this, they will. That India-SA series really set a new low benchmark of what home teams can get away with, and everyone’s now exploiting it to the utmost.
Time to follow the CC model and scrap the toss in Tests?
Well, the pitches prepared for the England tour seemed fair enough to me. They certainly didn’t rag square from ball one.
In the Bangladesh-England series:
1) Both matches were won by the team that won the toss.
2) The highest team score was 296.
3) The highest individual score was 104.
I’ve nothing against the occasional bowler-friendly pitch – and obviously don’t want matches where 600 plays 700 – but this is looking like a deliberate strategy to me. (As I’m writing a ball from Hazlewood has just leapt off a length and knocked a huge lump out of the pitch).
By the way, I’m not just getting at spin-friendly pitches and Asian teams. NZ served up some very green pitches for Pakistan and SA seamer paradises for SL last winter. We all know the ECB are playing this game as well.
I’ve not been watching this current Test so can’t comment on what that’s like. But for the England tour they were fair cricket wickets, and I remember the surprise that they weren’t grotesquely biased in favour of Bangladesh. A 2 Test series is too short to read anything into the toss, and don’t forget Bangladesh threw the first Test away. They should have won 2-0.
I have given up with the over rate issues. The players have no respect for the paying public. Nor do the admistrators. So they might as well just say we finish at 6.30pm (they do most days anyway) and just bowl what you can lads. Don’t srain yourselves! I’m sure some Selvey clone will be along to say it’s not the amount of overs bowled, but the quality of the overs. In which case I will have a good laugh.
As to the stump mics I have never seen the point of them. It’s a bit like puting a film of the inside of an abattoir in the meat Isle at Sainsburys. Nobody wants to see it, (apart from psychopaths) but we all know what goes on. I find the constant appologies from the commentators for the bad language far more of a pain. If you can’t handle the truth then don’t throw a hissy fit when the enevitable comes out. Just lets have some honesty about it, and stop trying to pretend that our side (whoever you support are the good guys, and the other lot are the baddies.)
I really hate it when tv companies want to cover something, and then try to change it because it’s not what their poor innocent audience can stand. If you don’t want the swearing turn the bloody things off.
As to the match I haven’t really watched much. I did catch up with the verdict last night. In which Nasser thought his Essex number 3 prodigy should be given lots of chances. Well done Bob Willis for pointing out that Roland Jones wasn’t given much of a go, and he was having some success. As usual your face has to fit with England, and the ECB media. Bad luck Roland Jones, your face is not pretty enough. Maybee you looked out of the window at the wrong moment. Bowlers always get dropped first. Anyway, if England get 150 lead or above I can’t see the WI chasing it down under pressure on the last day.
It won’t get the shiny toys excited, but this has been a very important knock from Malan given the match position. Didn’t really have him down as the glue of the innings, but he has been.
He’s been dropped and would have been out caught behind had the West Indies reviewed it. He’s basically been out twice and he hasn’t even reached 50. All in all, it’s not a confidence-building innings.
Batsmen get dropped. Pietersen was dropped twice in his 158 in 2005, do we discount the last 140? I don’t recall people making allowances for miracle catches or harsh lbws when that happens. It is what it is.
Is it true that Selvey is to be the new chairman of CWOTV now Allott has stood down?
I always fancied having the ability to switch selvey off
All nicely set up for a match-winning performance from S Ravi, I reckon.
Good job we don’t have 4 day tests yet, isn’t it Mr Hughes? I do love it when circumstances come together to make him look silly…
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Indeed Nick. Indeed.