Eng v WI Day 4 – Tourists Take Control
Oh, England. So much promise and hope. Yet Eng v WI Day 4 proved to be groundhog day.
England began day four trailing by 99 and at one stage looked set to post a sizeable fourth innings chase for their visitors. However, a flurry of early evening wickets put the tourists on top going into the final day.
The day started well for the hosts with Burns and Sibley chipping away at the Windies lead. It was the Surrey man who fell first. He was dismissed for 42 off the bowling of part-time spinner Roston Chase.
Dominic Sibley and Joe Denly took England into the lead when they went past 100. Nevertheless, Sibley departed shortly after when he was caught behind off Shannon Gabriel.
When Joe Denly was caught at slip off Chase for a disappointing 29 it brought captain Ben Stokes to the crease. He joined a relative newbie in Zak Crawley. Denly may face a battle to retain his place after with only 47 runs in the match and Joe Root to return next week.
Stokes and Crawley Add The Impetus
It was the pairing of Stokes and Crawley that looked set to move England into a commanding position during Eng v WI day 4. They took the lead past the 100 mark. A century partnership was denied when Stokes guided the ball to Shai Hope at gully off the bowling of his captaincy counterpart Jason Holder. This was the second time Jason Holder dismissed him in the match.
After being seemingly behind the eight ball moments earlier, the West Indies were bang on top once again when Alzarri Joseph dismissed Crawley one over later. The Kent batsman attempting to turn the ball into the leg side could only manage a leading edge back to the bowler. A well made 76 from Crawley during Eng v WI day 4 could yet be enough to see him keep his place in the side for the second Test.
Joseph quickly removed an out of sorts Jos Buttler for just nine and England were reeling. Leading by just 151 with four wickets remaining, the tail now needed to produce. Gabriel clean bowled Dominic Bess in the dying embers of the day to leave England seven down during Eng v WI day 4.
Ollie Pope was the last to fall. He chopped on to his stumps off that man Gabriel once more – the Trinidadian’s third wicket of the innings.
Eng v WI Day 5 Preview
Eng v WI day 4 closed with the hosts on 284-8. This gives them a lead of 170 with just two wickets left in the morning. Chasing runs in the fourth innings is never an easy task. This is especially true on a final day with a less than convincing batting line up; such as the West Indies order.
The hosts’ will be hoping the final two wickets and Mark Wood and Jofra Archer, in particular, can add some extra runs. They will be hoping to perhaps push the target north of 200. With only the ‘Burnley Lara’ Jimmy Anderson left to bat the tourists will be confident of knocking the tail over quickly.
All three results are still on the cards. It is, however, the West Indies who will start as favourites. Although as we know, cricket can be a funny old game.
If England does manage to set a target of between 200 and 220, they may have a chance. In 2018, England bowled out India for 184 in their fourth innings at the Rose Bowl. India was chasing 245 runs to win.
Eng v WI day 4 may have gone to the hosts but can England fight back and win on the 5th day?
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