Bresnan leads England to brink of series-clinching victory
West Indies 370 & 61-6 v England 428
Sunday 27 May 2012
Tim Bresnan led England to the brink of a series-clinching victory on day three of the second Investec Test against West Indies.
England initially fell well short of expectations with the bat, losing their last eight wickets for 169 to take what looked a narrow lead of 58 on the first innings.
But by stumps the tourists had slumped to 61 for six, Bresnan taking three for 10 after James Anderson and Stuart Broad had both struck with the new ball.
England had started the day on 259 for two and were eyeing a run-feast and a total of at least 550.
Instead, West Indies defied expectations with two sessions of spirited bowling only for their batsmen to crumble as England's pack of seamers sensed blood.
Bresnan, who had earlier made 39 not out, capped a productive evening with two wickets in the penultimate over.
Kevin Pietersen made a thrilling 72 yesterday but added just eight more before Ravi Rampaul nipped one back off the seam to have him lbw.
Strauss, resuming on 102, had yet to face a ball when Pietersen fell, but clipped Shane Shillingford for four to get off the mark for the day.
Ian Bell's first runs came with a classy cut for four off Rampaul and he then used his feet to deposit Shillingford over mid-on.
He was dropped on 15 but made just seven more before falling to the fifth delivery with the new ball. Kemar Roach was the bowler, going full and fast to Bell and clattering the front pad.
Aleem Dar rejected this appeal but it was overturned on review to make it 300 for four.
At 70 behind there was still serious work ahead of Jonny Bairstow, who was struck in the chest first up and almost gloved Roach's next bouncer just short of gully.
Roach took that as his cue to bomb Bairstow with short deliveries and the Yorkshireman, playing his second Test, failed the examination.
He managed four singles but it was no surprise when Roach dismissed him with another short one, Bairstow caught at mid-on off an ungainly leading edge.
Matt Prior made a breezy 16 before losing his middle stump and at tea England were six down and still 30 behind.
Bresnan was clattered by a Rampaul bouncer at the start of the afternoon session and had a scare when the seamer had an lbw appeal unsuccessfully reviewed.
But while Bresnan survived, Strauss - after seven hours at the crease - finally lost his discipline.
Darren Sammy hung one outside the off stump and Strauss flashed a catch to Denesh Ramdin, departing for 141 with his side seven short of parity.
A Roach no-ball tied the scores, with eighth-wicket pair Bresnan and Broad embarking on an entertaining stand worth 53 to build the lead.
Broad managed 25 before he mis-timed a sweep to give Shillingford his only wicket.
Bresnan struck five boundaries on his way to 39no but was left stranded when Marlon Samuels' part-time off-breaks did for Graeme Swann and Anderson.
Anderson was quickly back to his day job, sizing up the West Indies' vulnerable opening pair.
He needed just one ball at Kieran Powell, pitched up and sending the left-hander's leg stump cartwheeling via the inside edge.
Five for one became 14 for two as Anderson undid Adrian Barath with one that came back in to trap him leg before.
With regular number three Kirk Edwards absent with flu, Darren Bravo and Shivnarine Chanderpaul each moved up a place in the order.
Chanderpaul had a lucky escape on seven, shaping to leave Anderson but inadvertently sending the ball over the slips for four.
The world's number one batsman did not score again. Broad was the successful bowler this time, digging one in short and drawing the hook, which sailed straight to Jonathan Trott at fine-leg.
Samuels, fresh from his first-innings century, was next in and was duly beaten three times as Broad completed a wonderful wicket maiden.
England brought Swann and Bresnan into the attack and the latter struck in his second over.
He went round the wicket to Bravo (22) and won a clearcut lbw decision that was bafflingly referred by the batsman.
Samuels flicked Bresnan to deep mid-wicket to put the tourists back in the lead but the England all-rounder was not finished.
He had both Ramdin (six) and the latecomer Edwards (nought) lbw in the space of three deliveries to leave the West Indies just three in front with four wickets left.
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