Snakes & Ladders: 18/06/2011

England's quest to reach top of game
Click to follow
The Independent Online

England have fixed their sights on becoming the world's No 1 Test team – and sooner rather than later. Knowing England, though, their journey from today in third spot is unlikely to be without its ups and downs. Or snakes and ladders. Independent Sport will monitor their progress on a daily basis throughout the summer's seven Tests.

Snake: Nothing must get in the way of lunch, not even the quest for world domination. There was never going to be a huge amount of play at the Rose Bowl yesterday, but the ground looked ready for use at least 20 minutes before the end of an unnecessary lunch interval.

Ladder: If you can't get 'em out...Actually, Chris Tremlett is not having too much trouble picking up wickets. But he has also dished out some pain, breaking Tillakaratne Dilshan's thumb at Lord's and softening up Thilan Samaraweera yesterday.

Snake: It's official(ish) – the Sri Lankans have pulled a fast one with the Jayawardenes swopping identities. That can be the only explanation for Prasanna batting like Mahela and vice versa.

Ladder: Come to think of it, no ladder required. Tremlett, all 6ft 8in of him, will need no help in reaching the Rose Bowl's newly installed Test match honours board in order to record his six (or maybe seven)-for.

State of play on the snakes and ladders board: As you were, England.