Stewart leads England surge

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The Independent Online

In his 100th test match Alec Stewart is leading England in a surge that could settle the third test against the West Indies.

In his 100th test match Alec Stewart is leading England in a surge that could settle the third test against the West Indies.

After Speed demon Courtney Walsh picked up three early wickets in England's first innings as the hosts chased a Windies total of just 157, England were languishing on just 17 for 3.

Then a partnership between the veteren Stewart and debutant Marcus Trescothick saw the England total shoot up to 161 for three to leave the hosts 3 runs ahead with seven spare wickets and the wind in their sails.

The West Indies were restricted to a highly reachable figure by the heroics of Andrew Caddick.

Swing bowler Caddick had led an England fightback with two wickets in nine balls as the West Indies collapsed to 148 for eight at lunch.

The visitors, having recovered from 49 for four through a 69-run stand between skipper Jimmy Adams and Ramnaresh Sarwan, fell apart in the hour before the break as the home side made full use of the blustery conditions after a quiet first hour.

Caddick got to 3-45 with a morning spell that read 7-4-14-2 while Darren Gough and Dominic Cork have taken two wickets each. Adams and Sarwan took the West Indies to 118 for four. But Cork triggered the late order collapse with the first ball after the drinks break, trapping Sarwan leg before wicket for 36 runs.

The home side was made to rue some missed opportunities soon after the West Indies had resumed the day on 87 for four. Adams, who eventually made 24, played on to Caddick before he had added to his overnight 16 but the ball, despite hitting the stumps, failed to dislodge the bails with the total on 95 for four.

While Adams added just eight runs in his 101-minute presence on the second morning, Sarwan, battered and bruised by Gough and Craig White, dominated the stand with some positive batting.

The 21-year old was hit on the right index finger by Gough in the first over and later took a painful blow on his ribs off a White delivery that bounced awkwardly. He hit two fours in his two-hour innings, facing 100 balls.

After that fighting stand the West Indies lost four wickets for 17 runs in the space of 51 balls. It included the wicket of Curtly Ambrose, who was stunningly caught by Nasser Hussain at mid on. The England captain leapt to intercept a fierce drive off Caddick, snatching an overhead catch to leave Ambrose in disbelief.

This was after White had ended Adam's stubborn innings, having the left hander caught by third slip Graham Thorpe, his third catch of the innings.

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