St. George’s (Grenada), April 23:
Marlon Samuels’ seventh Test hundred and an enterprising last-wicket stand between Devendra Bishoo and Shannon Gabriel propelled the West Indies, but England still held the advantage after a rain-hit second day of the second Test here Wednesday.
The West Indies were bowled out for a respectable 299 in their first innings after resuming the day on 188 for five, with the right-handed Samuels hitting 103, reports CMC.
Captain Denesh Ramdin chipped in with 31, Bishoo got a career-best 30 and Jason Holder a cameo 22, as the West Indies battled three rain interruptions to add 111 for the loss of their last five wickets at the Grenada National Stadium.
Samuels and Ramdin put on 94 for the sixth wicket and when four wickets tumbled for 24 runs in the post-lunch session to leave the hosts on 247 for nine, Bishoo and Gabriel added an entertaining 52 to put the Windies on the brink of the 300-run mark.
At the close, however, England were making a strong reply at 74 without loss, with captain Alistair Cook unbeaten on 37 partnered by Jonathan Trott on 32.
On a day when only 60.4 overs could be bowled because of rain, the West Indies rallied under murky skies, defying an England seam attack inspired by familiar conditions.
Rain delayed the start and allowed only 8.5 overs before returning again to force an early lunch, with the West Indies reaching 201 without further loss.
The West Indies were 214 for five with Samuels having added one to his lunch time score of 97 and Ramdin unbeaten on 26.
When play resumed after a long rain-enforced break post lunch, Samuels wasted little time in bringing up his hundred when he steered seamer Jimmy Anderson to third man for four, in the second over after the resumption.
He required 40 balls to get the remaining six runs needed to reach the landmark.
Two balls later in the same over, Samuels lost the discipline that had characterised his innings, waving injudiciously at a back-of-a-length delivery and edging a sharp catch to Ian Bell at second slip.
He faced 228 deliveries in just under five hours at the crease and struck 14 fours.
Ramdin, who started the day on six, played freely in the time available, unfurling a couple of exquisite drives including a lovely punch through mid-on off seamer Benn Stokes.
However, he followed Samuels with ten runs added at 233 for seven, edging seamer Stuart Broad behind, after facing 80 balls and counting five fours in 142 minutes.
Holder then took centre stage with a fluent innings, facing a mere 28 balls and striking a four and two sixes.
He was dismissed by pacer Stuart Broad caught behind by wicketkeeper Jos Buttler.
Kemar Roach perished for just one to leave the West Indies floundering but Bishoo and Gabriel, who finished on 20 not out – his highest Test score – ensured the tail wagged.
The innings ended when Bishoo finally fell, missing a sweep at off-spinner Moeen Ali and being adjudged leg before wicket.
Broad finished with four for 61 while Anderson (2-47) and Jordan (2-65) claimed two wickets apiece. (IANS)