ENGLAND TOUR OF WEST INDIES, 2018-19
Cricbuzz Staff •
Joe Denly scored his maiden Test fifty © Getty
England continued to remain on top in the third Test in St. Lucia after their batsmen finally came to the fore on tour. The visitors added 99 runs in the second session to add to the 89 they made in the morning that stretched their lead to 330. England took full toll of Keemo Paul’s absence due to an injury sustained in the opening session, following which the Windies had to rely on the part-time spin of skipper Kraigg Brathwaite just minutes before the Tea break.
Joe Denly started off the session with another boundary to edge closer to his maiden half-century and finally got to that landmark with a neat straight drive off Kemar Roach in the following over. The 32-year-old made it three boundaries in three overs when an outside went through the vacant area in the slip cordon.
The boundaries kept coming off the bat of England’s No. 3 before his stay was cut short by Gabriel. Denly freed his arms once again when he noticed width, but this time he could only manage to get an under edge that went through to the keeper. Nevertheless, the knock would keep him on course for a spot in the Ashes squad later this year.
While Joe Root continued to remain sedate, the scoring rate didn’t drop as Jos Buttler kept the runs coming thick and fast following his arrival. Fetching a couple of boundaries, Buttler quickly moved to 11 from 10 and continued to milk the bowling attack post the drinks break. Both Root and Buttler looked confident against the spin of Roston Chase as the lead went past 300 at one stage.
At one stage just before the break, Windies thought they had Buttler caught down the leg side when he missed a sweep off Chase but the batsman immediately challenged the umpire’s decision to send him back to the pavilion. Replays confirmed that the bat had indeed missed the ball, extending Buttler’s stay and Windies’ misery.
Brief scores: England 277 & 207/3 (Joe Denly 69, Joe Root 45*; Keemo Paul 1-11) lead Windies 154 by 330 runs