West Indies v England 2022 Second Test
England’s Caribbean tour landed in Barbados with the series still level after one Test match
Another tough playing surface made for a batters dream and a bowlers nightmare, and West Indies captain Kraigg Braithwaite scored over 200 runs in the match to help his side to another draw.
The tourists made two changes to the side, with Saqib Mahmood and Matt Fisher were given their Test debuts as they came in for Mark Wood and Craig Overton.
The hosts named an unchanged side from the Antigua Test, meaning centurion Nkrumah Bonner would be back looking to add to his impressive innings.
The English debutants were made to wait for their chance with the ball, as Joe Root won the toss and elected to bat.
On a slow, batting friendly surface the West Indies struck early when Jayden Seales found an edge from Zak Crawley who, after his ton in Antigua, departed for 0.
This brought Joe Root to the crease who, along with Alex Lees, steadied the ship and guided England to the 80 run mark.
Lees fell for 30, a very solid innings which would have come as a welcome relief to the Durham opener.
Dan Lawrence joined his captain in the middle and the pair put on over 150 for the third wicket.
He fell nine short of his ton, but England’s middle order pressed home well and first Root and then Ben Stokes (in incredible high intensity fashion) reached their centuries, Root passing 150 for the 12th time in his career.
Cameos from Ben Foakes and Chris Woakes pushed the tourists past 500 and with this brought about the declaration.
It was tough going for the Windies bowlers, who were out in the field for over 150 overs. Veerasammy Permaul bowled 36 of these, and picked up three wickets.
The West Indies started their innings in a similar fashion to England, by losing an early wicket. With just his second ball in Test cricket, Matthew Fisher had his first wicket.
John Campbell edged behind to Ben Foakes for just four, and the English tails were up. However, the batting side settled themselves and it was time for the English bowlers to slog it out.
Brooks and Bonner fell relatively cheaply to leave the score at 101–3, but when Jermaine Blackwood joined his captain Kraigg Braithwaite at the crease, the pair set about getting stuck in to the huge English total.
In a composed days play, both reached well earned hundreds and when Blackwood was finally trapped LBW by Dan Lawrence late on day 3, Blackwood and Braithwaite had put on 183 for their side.
Braithwaite guided himself to 160 and with some handy support from the tail, helped push his side over the 400 mark.
When Joshua Da Silva was trapped LBW, the West Indies had finally been bowled out for 41, still 94 behind England.
Day four continued and England came out swinging. Lawrence, Stokes and Bairstow cameos set the tourists up for a declarable target.
The final day came and a second drawn Test from two matches looked on the cards.
England declared on 185–6, setting West Indies an improbable second innings chase.
Kraigg Braithwaite picked up where he left off in the first innings and he would end this innings unbeaten on 56.
He was doing his job at one end, although he was losing partners at a steady rate.
Campbell, Brooks, Bonner, Blackwood and Holder lost their wickets for a combined total of just 43 runs.
Mahmood was having a session to remember, and he finished with figures of 2–21.
When Da Silva joined his captain, the hosts were 93–5 and England had thin hopes of sealing an unlikely victory.
However, Braithwaite and Da Silva dug in and frustrated Joe Root’s men to the very end.
After 65 overs of the second innings, the captains shook hands on a second draw of the series.
Grenada is the third and final stop on the tour, and the series is still very much all to play for.