La Gaceta De Mexico - Da Silva hits undefeated maiden century as Windies lead by 93 runs

Da Silva hits undefeated maiden century as Windies lead by 93 runs
Da Silva hits undefeated maiden century as Windies lead by 93 runs

Da Silva hits undefeated maiden century as Windies lead by 93 runs

Joshua da Silva's maiden Test century extended West Indies' lower-order resistance through the entire morning session as the home side were eventually dismissed for 297 at lunch on the third day of the third and final Test against England on Saturday.

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On a pitch which appears to be getting easier for batting, the tourists will now face the psychological burden of an unexpected deficit of 93 runs when they start their second innings after the interval.

Having reduced the home side to 128 for seven in reply to their modest first innings total of 204, and then endured da Silva's resistance with considerable support from Alzarri Joseph and Kemar Roach at the end of day two when West Indies were 232 for eight, England's frustrations grew in the pre-lunch period.

Any thoughts of a swift finale to the innings when Roach fell to Saqib Mahmood without adding to his overnight score of 25 were extinguished by the resistance of last man Jayden Seales.

Guided through the partnership by his fellow Trinidadian, the pair put on 52 for the final wicket with da Silva taking most of the strike.

Seales coped creditably with the deliveries he was required to face to the extent of stroking a four and six in getting to 13 off 59 deliveries before offering exasperated England captain Joe Root a catch off his own bowling to finally end the innings 15 minutes beyond the scheduled end of the lunch interval.

Seales' demise came as the culmination of a period of celebration, chaos and confusion as the determined da Silva inched towards three figures, notwithstanding the negative leg-side tactics of the England bowlers intent on preventing him from scoring.

His improvisation to their tactics proved so effective that he then accelerated from 80 to the coveted century mark by swatting a succession of boundaries off left-arm spinner Jack Leach and fast-medium bowler Craig Overton.

His tenth boundary, played like a two-fisted forehand through mid-on, triggered celebrations by da Silva and Seales as the 23-year-old savoured his first hundred in Test cricket.

He was then given out caught behind off Overton and even though he reviewed the decision, da Silva was almost in the players' dressing room when the television replays confirmed he was not out and he rather sheepishly returned to the middle, followed by the increasingly disgruntled England players.

They did not have to wait much longer for the end of the innings though with Seales falling in the next over bowled by Root, leaving da Silva unbeaten in an effort spanning almost six hours in which he faced 257 deliveries.