West Indies v England: first Test, day four – live | Sport

Hello and welcome to the OBO of the fourth day of this contest between West Indies and England in Antigua.

Tortoise and … despair?

What to make of proceedings yesterday? Nkrumah Bonner ground England down down down, but not quickly. Bonner’s nine hour vigil at the crease was less high end Italian coffee grinder (though it was De Loooonghi- hoho) and more resembled an ancient Calabrian olive oil press operated by a doddery donkey and overseen, between protracted puffs on a cigarillo, by a stern looking elderly signore.

But, and I must stress thisthat is to take nothing away from Bonner, who has likely put his side into a position that if not exactly match-winning is certainly match-dominating.

Bonner spent years in the cricketing wilderness after making his international debut in a couple of T20Is back in 2011/12 where he was ultimately discarded for, well, slow scoring.

He found some form for Jamaica in 2019 and hasn’t really looked back since. His Test debut, against Bangladesh at Chattogram in early 2021 saw him score 86 off 245 balls as West Indies pulled off the highest ever Test run chase in Asia. Kyle Mayers’ incredible 210* deservedly took the headlines but Bonner was there, doing his thing – stultifying, accumulating and securing a foothold on which his side could then capitalise.

West Indies lead England by 62 runs and still have a wicket in hand.

England? Well, they’ve got problems. Much as Paul Collingwood wants to laud the efforts of his lads it was a dispiriting day in the dirt. Woakes and Overton looked to lack any real threat and Mark Wood was off the field for the second half of the day with an elbow injury, England will be praying it is a situation that does not start to unravel in the same way that Jofra Archer’s did , putting him out of the game for an extended amount of time.

Ben Stokes, fresh off a side strain, ended up doing a Ben Stokes, gritting his gnashers and reeling off 28 overs, returning figures of 2-42 in the process. Good on him, but this is not really the way things were meant to go. Was it?

Can England snare this last wicket quick sticks and beat themselves into a position where they can put some pressure back on Jason Holder’s men at some point tomorrow? (Hmm, not likely)

Will West Indies skittle them and charge to victory? (More likely)

Or will things slooowly peter out into an unmemorable draw? (Most likely but please, please no).

Jim here with the kidneys until Tim swoops in later on, as ever do get in touch via email or @Jimbo_Cricket on Twitter. Your thoughts, theories, whimsy and.. whatever else are most welcome.

We’ll be underway at 14:00 GMT (10:00 am local time)


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