We must im­prove for Ashes, says An­der­son

Tons by Brath­waite and Hope put Windies on top Eng­land’s at­tack made to pay for way­ward de­liv­er­ies

The Sunday Telegraph - Sport - - Front Page - By Nick Hoult at Head­in­g­ley

James An­der­son has warned that Eng­land will not win the Ashes this winter un­less they be­come more con­sis­tent af­ter a poor day against West Indies here.

West Indies fin­ished the day 75 runs ahead on 329 for five af­ter cen­turies from Kraigg Brath­waite and Shai Hope put them in con­trol of the sec­ond In­vestec Test, just a week af­ter los­ing 19 wick­ets in one day to be crushed at Edg­bas­ton.

That was Eng­land’s third win in a row and the side had thought they were be­com­ing more con­sis­tent af­ter upand-down re­sults over the past few years, but they were bowled out for only 258 here on day one af­ter win­ning the toss and the bowlers strug­gled for con­trol as Brath­waite and Hope scored West Indies’ first dou­ble hun­dred stand for nearly four years.

“We didn’t bowl very well. Even on a pitch with life in it, you have to put the ball in the right area,” said An­der­son. “We talk about bowl­ing in part­ner­ships but we did not do that much to­day. There was al­ways a re­lease at the other end. We bowled a lot of bad balls.

“I thought we had got on the right side of be­ing con­sis­tent with two wins against South Africa and at Edg­bas­ton. We are still evolv­ing as a side and iron­ing out those in­con­sis­ten­cies is a big thing for this team go­ing for­ward. We have a big tour of Aus­tralia coming up and we can’t go there and win the se­ries if we are in­con­sis­tent.

“They bat­ted bril­liantly. They played the con­di­tions very well, go­ing through the tough pe­ri­ods and as the day went on they cashed in. I think our bats­men could have learned from the way they ap­plied them­selves. We have just got to look at our­selves. Did we cre­ate enough pres­sure? Did we put enough balls in the right ar­eas?”

This was one of West Indies’ best days overseas, par­tic­u­larly in Eng­land, for a long time.

“We have to just keep­ing work­ing to­wards more days like th­ese,” said Brath­waite. “We know what we can do and we knew we could do bet­ter.

“We wanted to show fight and worked twice as hard. The key is to be­lieve in our­selves. Just be­lieve. It is not im­pos­si­ble.”

Fi­nally West In­dian pride was re­stored with two Ba­jan bats­men fight­ing hard to fuel dreams of their side’s first win in Eng­land for 17 long years.

Kraigg Brath­waite’s 134 and Shai Hope’s un­beaten 147, his maiden Test cen­tury, pro­duced the pos­si­bil­ity of one of the great come­backs in Test history as West Indies moved to 329 for five and a first-in­nings lead of 71.

For nearly six hours – al­most the time in which they lost 19 wick­ets last week – Brath­waite and Hope frus­trated Eng­land, com­bin­ing to put on 246 for the fourth wicket, the first dou­ble hun­dred stand by West Indies in Test cricket since De­cem­ber 2013.

For so long this gen­er­a­tion have been clob­bered by the West In­dian old guard. But if they can turn this po­si­tion into vic­tory the story will change and fi­nally the greats of Caribbean cricket can heap praise on the young­sters.

Brath­waite has Test pedi­gree with this his sixth hun­dred and sec­ond against Eng­land.

But the real en­cour­ag­ing sign for West Indies cricket was the per­for­mance of Hope.

This was his first Test hun­dred in his 12th game as he jus­ti­fied his rep­u­ta­tion as one of the bright young tal­ents of West Indies cricket.

He came in at 35 for three, the ball zip­ping around and James An­der­son on a roll. Hope sur­vived the early ex­am­i­na­tion with a bit of luck but, as if he were an old pro who had played at Head­in­g­ley for years, he cashed in when the sun shone in the af­ter­noon, play­ing some won­der­ful drives through the off-side off quicks and spin­ners alike.

He also sur­vived a tough ex­am­i­na­tion by Ben Stokes, who bounced him in the af­ter­noon, hit­ting him on the head and try­ing to ruf­fle him up with re­turn throws at the stumps. An­der­son aside, Eng­land strug­gled. Lengths were of­ten too short, Stu­art Broad took most of the day to find his range with­out hold­ing it for long enough to be threat­en­ing and Chris Woakes was ex­cel­lent be­fore lunch but faded, un­sur­pris­ingly, af­ter so long out with a side in­jury.

In truth Eng­land were pay­ing the price for their poor bat­ting on day one. There are only so many times Broad and An­der­son can dig them out of trou­ble. Brath­waite is a Test bats­man in a tra­di­tional mould. Doughty and pa­tient he nev­er­the­less reached his fifty and cen­tury with sixes. The York­shire crowd recog­nise good, hard graft from a bats­man when they see it and he was given a stand­ing ova­tion when he was fi­nally bowled by Broad.

West Indies have only won two away Tests out­side Bangladesh and Zim­babwe since their last vic­tory in Eng­land in 2000 and one of those, in Shar­jah last year, was dom­i­nated by a hun­dred and sec­ond-in­nings fifty by Brath­waite. With no gen­uine ex­pe­ri­ence in the side, Brath­waite at 24 and play­ing his 39th Test is their se­nior bats­man and they needed him to show the way af­ter the aw­ful­ness of Edg­bas­ton. He owns four race­horses that train back home in Barbados at the Gar­ri­son race­track and he ran a well-paced race here, with his fifty coming off 89 balls, his hun­dred 189. Brath­waite went to the same school in Barbados as Sir Frank Wor­rell, and the story of his un­usual first name re­veals a fam­ily steeped in cricket.

His mother wanted a son whose name be­gan with ‘K’. His father’s favourite crick­eter was Craig McDer­mott, hence the com­pro­mise, although where the dou­ble gee comes from will take fur­ther in­ves­ti­ga­tion.

The morn­ing started with a hor­ri­ble grey cloud form­ing over the ground giv­ing An­der­son per­fect con­di­tions. Night­watch­man Deven­dra Bishoo for­lornly swished and prod­ded at An­der­son’s away swinger un­til he fi­nally edged a cut be­hind.

Kyle Hope was also soon in rough wa­ters against An­der­son per­plexed by the ball mov­ing both ways be­fore an in­swinger was edged to Joe Root at slip, who took a good catch low down.

Eng­land were on top. The Test head­ing in a pre­dictable di­rec­tion. Broad was strug­gling to back up his mate An­der­son but Woakes was swing­ing the ball. Eng­land were twice de­nied Brath- waite’s wicket when rightly the de­ci­sion re­view sys­tem saved the bats­man.

On 35 he was given out lbw to Broad but an in­side edge was de­tected by the tech­nol­ogy.

On 46 Moeen Ali had Brath­waite given out lbw by the same um­pire, Sun­daram Ravi, but Hawk­eye showed he was hit out­side the line of off stump. Next ball Brath­waite dumped Moeen over long on for six to bring up his fifty.

West Indies sensed a change in mo­men­tum af­ter lunch. The pitch was still giv­ing the bowlers plenty of help but Eng­land were too short and the game went flat for the bowl­ing side.

Stokes tried his best to un­set­tle Hope, Moeen went round the wicket and Broad had an edge that would have car­ried to a third slip had there been one.

Brath­waite, though, was un­flus­tered. He moved into the 90s with con­sec­u­tive fours and wanted his hun­dred be­fore tea.

Root bring­ing on Tom West­ley to bowl his off-breaks was Brath­waite’s chance. As soon as he bowled a fuller ball, Brath­waite latched on it play­ing his favourite shot over long on to reach his hun­dred two balls be­fore the break.

Hope showed no sign of nerves as his first Test hun­dred loomed. Root brought in the field on 99 but again Eng­land were off line, an easy long hop on leg stump al­low­ing Hope to reach his mile­stone.

The scores were soon level and West Indies were build­ing a lead when Brath­waite was bowled by one that scut­tled low.

Ros­ton Chase edged to slip as Eng­land sensed a change of for­tunes but Jer­maine Black­wood has se­ri­ous tal­ent as a shot player and im­me­di­ately took the fight to Eng­land as he did amid the car­nage of Edg­bas­ton.

He thumped four bound­aries, in­clud­ing one off the fi­nal ball of play which summed up Eng­land’s day. Moeen bowled a hor­ri­ble long hop down leg side which Black­wood ham­mered to the bound­ary. West Indies had rolled back the years.

West Indies opener Kraigg Brath­waite is a bats­man in the tra­di­tional mode – doughty and pa­tient

Warn­ing: James An­der­son be­lieves Eng­land must be more con­sis­tent to beat Aus­tralia

Stand­ing his ground: Shai Hope tor­mented Eng­land’s bowlers, in­clud­ing James An­der­son (inset left)

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