Jos Buttler's Caribbean cameo cannot hide World Twenty20 worries

West Indies 155-5 England 152-7 (WI win by 5 wickets to take series)

kensington oval

With the World Twenty20 a mere three days away, England produced yet another uncertain performance of the shortest form's arts. They went down by five wickets to the West Indies in this second game, and lose the three-match series.

What perhaps mattered more than the defeat, with one match to go on Thursday, was the evidence that England are still casting around for a workable method for the tournament in Bangladesh starting on Sunday. They were better but not that much better. The feeling is that time may already have run out.

From 26 for 3 in the fifth over, England effected a recovery through the charmingly blazing bat of Jos Buttler. But West Indies came out slugging at the start of their response and after that it was a case simply of seeing it through. They, too, had their moments of doubt as England refused to disappear without trace, as they had in last Sunday's defeat, but there was enough fuel in the tank and shots in the locker to see them through with seven balls to spare.

On this occasion England appeared to have judged the pitch correctly by including two mores spinners, Stephen Parry and Moeen Ali, one of whom did not bowl. But that does not mean they picked the most efficient team with a major tournament looming so quickly.

Buttler is never dull. Were he to pursue a career to match his name, he would come into the drawing room to serve his lordship a gin and tonic on a silver platter, perform a double backward somersault with pike and not spill a drop.

He is supposed to be the finisher in this form of the game but on this occasion he had to be the start, the middle and almost the end. He did not quite complete the third act.

There were three sixes and three fours in his 67 from 43 balls and it is at least arguable that he was forced into deceleration by the rain delay of 45 minutes just as he was entering into full stride.

Together with Alex Hales, who was altogether much less convincing, he rescued an innings that was again heading for disaster.

In wisdom which can probably be considered less than infinite, England chose to go into the match without Ian Bell, who has replaced the injured Joe Root in their squad for this series and the World Twenty20. To have Bell, one of the world's leading batsmen, around to carry drinks almost amounts to disrespect.

Although he has not played a T20 match for three years (in which case, why have him around?) Bell is presumably a smarter bet than the present top three. Michael Lumb and the new cap Ali failed. Hales was a qualified success but could have been out three times.

The captain Eoin Morgan, standing in for the injured Stuart Broad, was perhaps most culpable, essaying a pick up shot into the wind. Buttler's glamorous innings – there was a scoop for six included – gave England a chance, but West Indies liked the pace on the ball from the start.

Effective middle overs of spin put England back into the match but their opponents' captain, Darren Sammy, plundered in style to secure victory.

News
A 1930 image of the Karl Albrecht Spiritousen and Lebensmittel shop, Essen. The shop was opened by Karl and Theo Albrecht’s mother; the brothers later founded Aldi
people
Arts and Entertainment
Standing the test of time: Michael J Fox and Christopher Lloyd in 'Back to the Future'
filmA cult movie event aims to immerse audiences of 80,000 in ‘Back to the Future’. But has it lost its magic?
Sport
Louis van Gaal watches over Nani
transfers
Arts and Entertainment
Flora Spencer-Longhurst as Lavinia, William Houston as Titus Andronicus and Dyfan Dwyfor as Lucius
theatreThe Shakespeare play that proved too much for more than 100 people
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
exclusivePunk icon Viv Albertine on Sid Vicious, complacent white men, and why free love led to rape
Sport
New Real Madrid signing James Rodríguez with club president Florentino Perez
transfersColombian World Cup star completes £63m move to Spain
Arts and Entertainment
Stir crazy: Noel Fielding in 'Luxury Comedy 2: Tales from Painted Hawaii'
comedyAs ‘Luxury Comedy’ returns, Noel Fielding on why mainstream success scares him and what the future holds for 'The Boosh'
Life and Style
Flow chart: Karl Landsteiner discovered blood types in 1900, yet scientists have still not come up with an explanation for their existence
lifeAll of us have one. Yet even now, it’s a matter of debate what they’re for
Arts and Entertainment
'Weird Al' Yankovic, or Alfred Matthew, at the 2014 Los Angeles Film Festival Screening of
musicHis latest video is an ode to good grammar. But what do our experts think he’s missed out?
Travel
Hotel Tour d’Auvergne in Paris launches pay-what-you-want
travelIt seems fraught with financial risk, but the policy has its benefits
Arts and Entertainment
booksThe best children's books for this summer
Life and Style
News to me: family events were recorded in the personal columns
techFamily events used to be marked in the personal columns. But now Facebook has usurped that
Caption competition
Caption competition
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Noel Fielding's 'Luxury Comedy': A land of the outright bizarre

Noel Fielding's 'Luxury Comedy'

A land of the outright bizarre
What are the worst 'Word Crimes'?

What are the worst 'Word Crimes'?

‘Weird Al’ Yankovic's latest video is an ode to good grammar. But what do The Independent’s experts think he’s missed out?
Can Secret Cinema sell 80,000 'Back to the Future' tickets?

The worst kept secret in cinema

A cult movie event aims to immerse audiences of 80,000 in ‘Back to the Future’. But has it lost its magic?
Facebook: The new hatched, matched and dispatched

The new hatched, matched and dispatched

Family events used to be marked in the personal columns. But now Facebook has usurped the ‘Births, Deaths and Marriages’ announcements
Why do we have blood types?

Are you my type?

All of us have one but probably never wondered why. Yet even now, a century after blood types were discovered, it’s a matter of debate what they’re for
Honesty box hotels: You decide how much you pay

Honesty box hotels

Five hotels in Paris now allow guests to pay only what they think their stay was worth. It seems fraught with financial risk, but the honesty policy has its benefit
Commonwealth Games 2014: Why weight of pressure rests easy on Michael Jamieson’s shoulders

Michael Jamieson: Why weight of pressure rests easy on his shoulders

The Scottish swimmer is ready for ‘the biggest race of my life’ at the Commonwealth Games
Some are reformed drug addicts. Some are single mums. All are on benefits. But now these so-called 'scroungers’ are fighting back

The 'scroungers’ fight back

The welfare claimants battling to alter stereotypes
Amazing video shows Nasa 'flame extinguishment experiment' in action

Fireballs in space

Amazing video shows Nasa's 'flame extinguishment experiment' in action
A Bible for billionaires

A Bible for billionaires

Find out why America's richest men are reading John Brookes
Paranoid parenting is on the rise - and our children are suffering because of it

Paranoid parenting is on the rise

And our children are suffering because of it
For sale: Island where the Magna Carta was sealed

Magna Carta Island goes on sale

Yours for a cool £4m
Phone hacking scandal special report: The slide into crime at the 'News of the World'

The hacker's tale: the slide into crime at the 'News of the World'

Glenn Mulcaire was jailed for six months for intercepting phone messages. James Hanning tells his story in a new book. This is an extract
We flinch, but there are degrees of paedophilia

We flinch, but there are degrees of paedophilia

Child abusers are not all the same, yet the idea of treating them differently in relation to the severity of their crimes has somehow become controversial
The truth about conspiracy theories is that some require considering

The truth about conspiracy theories is that some require considering

For instance, did Isis kill the Israeli teenagers to trigger a war, asks Patrick Cockburn