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All to play for in final Test Match

The English batting and bowling departments are looking good, while West Indies’ search for consistency still looks out of reach

All to play for in final Test Match - Cricket News
West Indies is far from consistent with bat and ball, and that is something it will search for in Barbados.
Alastair Cook was a relieved man after scoring two half-centuries in England’s nine-wicket win in the second Test against West Indies at St George’s in Grenada, which got over on Saturday.
The win, fashioned by a first innings 182 not out by Joe Root and a great second-innings burst from James Anderson, made up somewhat for England’s poor run in the World Cup.
England, however, still need at least a series win to quieten its critics and for that it will need to put on an all-round show again when the two sides lock horns in the third Test at Barbados, starting on Friday (May 1).
England won its last Test series – the Pataudi Trophy – by defeating India 3-1 last year. Since then, it has been one poor performance after another.
But, while England has had its share of issues, the West Indies story has been no different.
West Indies has been dogged by issues on and off the field and has been in the middle of a prolonged slump. But it has given a decent account of itself, if only in patches, in the two Tests played so far.
In the first Test, centuries from Jermaine Blackwood in the first innings and Jason Holder in the second helped West Indies earn a draw. The bowling has been mediocre too, with no one looking penetrative enough for any length of time, and England scored 464 and 144 for 1 pretty easily in Grenada.
There were some positives for West Indies in the second Test, with Marlon Samuels and Kraigg Brathwaite stepping it up with centuries. But consistency with bat and ball is still a long way away and that is something West Indies will search for in Barbados.
England, meanwhile, seems to have finally found some balance in the batting. Cook has spent enough time out in the middle, Jonathan Trott’s return to form is a good sign, Gary Ballance has looked streaky but has managed to hold his own and Ian Bell has also looked dangerous.
England’s most effective calling card this tour, though, has been Root. The youngster, who has six Test hundreds from 24 games, has scored upwards of 50 in all three innings he has played so far. His form would worry West Indies as it has been unable to find way to break through England’s middle order so far.
On the bowling front, James Anderson and Stuart Broad are finally looking as dangerous as they were the last time England donned the whites, Chris Jordan’s ability to move the ball around is troubling West Indies’ batsmen, while Moeen Ali’s offspin has been a threat too.
West Indies will do with a win and a tied series to boost its morale and give Phil Simmons, the new coach, a platform to work with. The problem for West Indies is that England is looking for that series win just as badly.

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