NOTTINGHAM, England: England will take an unbeatable lead in their three-match series against the West Indies if they win the second Test at Trent Bridge starting here on Friday.
And, after a five-wicket victory in the first Test at Lord’s, few would bet against Andrew Strauss’s number one ranked side going 2-0 up in Nottingham.
The West Indies did take the first Test into the fifth day and twice had England wobbling as they pursued a modest target of 191.
But England were only ever one decent partnership away from victory, which came courtesy of Alastair Cook (79) and Ian Bell (63 not out).
Well though Shivnarine Chanderpaul, officially the world’s best batsman, played in scoring 87 not out and 91 at Lord’s, the fact he came in with the total on 86 for three and then 36 for three was a testament to the failings of West Indies’ top order.
The likes of opener Adrian Barath, Kieran Powell and Kirk Edwards can expect their techniques to be tested again by James Anderson and Stuart Broad, man-of-the-match at Lord’s with an 11-wicket haul, at a Trent Bridge ground renowned for aiding swing bowling. West Indies have won just twice in their last 31 Tests and are without a win in 15 Tests in England, a run including 13 defeats.
They badly need someone in the top order to lend more support to Chanderpaul and Marlon Samuels, who made 86 in the second innings at Lord’s.
Kevin fined for Knight comment
Kevin Pietersen was fined an “undisclosed sum” by the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) on Wednesday following a Twitter attack on former England batsman Nick Knight.
Last week, England batting star Pietersen took to Twitter to question the credentials of Knight, who averaged just 23.96 in 17 Tests with one hundred, as a Test match commentator for Sky Sports.
“Can someone please tell me how Nick Knight has worked his way into the commentary box for the Tests? Ridiculous,” said Pietersen, who has 19 Test hundreds to his credit.
The ECB held a disciplinary hearing Wednesday, with managing director Hugh Morris and team director Andy Flower present, and opted to impose an undisclosed fine on Pietersen, part suspended for 12 months.