La Gaceta De Mexico - West Indies pacemen send England crashing in decisive Test

West Indies pacemen send England crashing in decisive Test
West Indies pacemen send England crashing in decisive Test

West Indies pacemen send England crashing in decisive Test

West Indies' pace and seam bowlers made full use of a helpful pitch in reducing England to 114 for eight at tea on the first day of the third and final Test at the Grenada National Stadium in Thursday.

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On a surface totally different in character to the benign tracks of the preview two tedious drawn matches in Antigua and Barbados, the home bowlers revelled in the conditions with only former captain Jason Holder missing out on the harvest of wickets through the first two sessions.

Opening bowlers Kemar Roach and Jayden Seales, together with lanky pacer Alzarri Joseph all took two wickets each.

But the West Indies got a real bonus from the impact of Kyle Mayers.

Selected primarily for his batting, but also noted as a useful change bowler and occasional partnership-breaker in his brief international career, the medium-pacer made the first breakthrough of the day for the home side and then added the prized scalp of England captain Joe Root in a five-over spell in which he did not concede a single run.

Limping to lunch at 46 for three, the situation deteriorated quickly for England just after the interval as they lost Ben Stokes, opener Alex Lees and first Test century-maker Jonny Bairstow with the score on 53.

Ben Foakes and Craig Overton were also casualties of an eventful afternoon but Chris Woakes offered a measure of resistance with an unbeaten 25, putting on 24 by the tea interval with Jack Leach.

Included in the home side's final 11 for the first time in the series, Mayers struck in his second over when Zak Crawley drove loosely at a full-length delivery to be taken at short extra-cover by Kraigg Brathwaite.

West Indies captain Brathwaite, who had no hesitation in bowling first on winning the toss, was an even happier man two overs later when his England counterpart, Root, was drawn tentatively forward by Mayers' wobbly medium-pace and offered a straightforward catch to wicketkeeper Joshua da Silva before he had scored.

Mayers replaced left-arm spinner Veerasammy Permaul from the team which featured in the two drawn Tests.

His clever variations and movement through the air and off the seam have presented a very different challenge from the greater pace of the frontline bowlers.

Like West Indies, England also made one change to their team from the second Test.

Overton replaced Matt Fisher in a swap of seam bowlers. Fisher made his Test debut at Kensington Oval only because Overton fell ill on the night before the match got underway.