England Lions v West Indians, Northampton, 1st day May 10, 2012

Lions quicks shine as West Indies labour

64

England Lions 40 for 1 trail West Indians 147 (Bravo 51, Brooks 3-23) by 107 runs
Scorecard

Given the start West Indies have had to their tour things could be said to be looking up. The full squad is finally available after Narsingh Deonarine arrived in the country and they managed the majority of a day's play for the first time. However, in reality, that time on the field did not allay any of the concerns about their batting heading into the Test series as they stumbled to 147 all out - albeit in tricky conditions.

Yet they are the sort of the conditions very likely to greet them at Lord's next week and their audition against the Lions attack was from convincing. Only Darren Bravo, with a determined and increasingly fluent 51, offered significant resistance after the top order was blown away and the tail folded without much fight. From England's point of view it was another display of the fine bowling resources on offer to them - Stuart Meaker was the best on show - but somehow the visitors need to find a way of putting 300 on the board. If they can do that their bowling attack is good enough to keep the contests even.

Given all the recent poor weather, the fact that play was only delayed by an hour was unexpected but it was no surprise that James Taylor, the Lions captain, inserted the visitors and neither that they struggled to combat the moving ball, although in mitigation it was their first extended period in the middle. An inexperienced top order was always going to be up against it, as they will be during the Test series.

Last week at Hove, where there were only 34 overs in three days, the West Indian top three did not flourish and it is a major weakness. On this occasion they were back in the pavilion with 16 on the board and when Shivnarine Chanderpaul departed cheaply even three figures appeared distant.

But they cannot be relying on Chanderpaul all the time and Bravo gave the English audience their first glimpse of his ability with an increasingly positive display, especially considering the conditions. He battled at the start of his stay, reaching 6 off 44 deliveries before three boundaries in four balls kick-started his innings shortly before lunch. He continued to drive well after the break, reaching fifty from 86 balls, before top-edging a pull off Meaker, who bowled with impressive pace and troubled the batsmen throughout.

Bravo had added 75 with Marlon Samuels, who was reacquainting himself with first-class cricket following a spell in the IPL, but two overs later Meaker added a further dent to the recovery when Samuels played slightly away from his body, although it was another good delivery. Meaker, who has taken 11 wickets in two Championship matches this season, soon added Shane Shillingford to his tally as the tall offspinner lost his off stump and gave Meaker three wickets in 15 balls.

The earlier success had gone to the hometown boy. Jack Brooks, wearing his trademark head band (although in England red and white rather than Northamptonshire maroon), had to bowl into the wind and produced a strong opening spell. Adrian Barath, who had twice edged over and through the cordon, was the first to fall when he fended off the back foot to third slip. Brooks' second came courtesy of a fine diving catch by Ian Bell at second slip to remove Kirk Edwards, who is captaining the tourists here after it was decided to rest Darren Sammy.

Between Brooks' successes Jade Dernbach also made his mark when he found the edge of Kieran Powell to give Jonny Bairstow a catch. Both Dernbach and Brooks were replaced after exacting six-over spells but the pressure was maintained by Meaker and Matt Coles. The former was particularly impressive, bowling with hostile pace and getting the ball to jag back at both Bravo and Chanderpaul.

However, it was Coles who bagged the key wicket of Chanderpaul although not with one of the many good deliveries. Instead, Chanderpaul tried to bail out of a half-hearted pull stroke and lobbed a catch to mid-on. It was a notable first Lions scalp for Coles but rare for Chanderpaul to offer such a gift.

Coles claimed his second when Denesh Ramdin drove to gully playing a loose drive without footwork when conditions demanded more circumspection and the equal share of the success continued with Brooks and Dernbach cleaning up the innings.

The signs were not promising for a West Indian fightback when Fidel Edwards began the Lions reply in horrid fashion with three consecutive no-balls, the last of which took Michael Carberry's inside edge into the stumps. Eventually, though, Edwards put his foot behind the line and trapped Joe Root lbw with one that scooted through low.

Carberry opened his scoring with a pulled six off Ravi Rampaul but lived a charmed life, edging short of third slip off Edwards and being dropped in the gully on 9, off Kemar Roach. Nick Compton looked more assured as the West Indian bowlers struggled to locate a consistently full length. They have not got long to find their range.

Andrew McGlashan is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Meety on May 12, 2012, 6:06 GMT

    @jmchilhinney - wasn't meaning to actually bag the scheduling, I understand that from an Ozzy perspective, an English summer is a bit of a misnomer! LOL! At the end of the day, England is the only country that has conditions like this that tests are constantly played in - although, NZ & our very own Hobart can sometimes match it! As for the Wombats - yep, I know what he is talking about, but there really hasn't been much other than IPL to read/comment on!

  • JG2704 on May 11, 2012, 15:27 GMT

    @AKS - Forgot about SJ but I see a fellow Somerset fan has answered that

  • JG2704 on May 11, 2012, 15:25 GMT

    @AKS286 on (May 10 2012, 21:09 PM GMT) SH and MH are way off the side. Tres retired from internationals due to his depression illness although he was the best county batsmen by far last season. Unfortunately he has had some ankle injuries which look like they might threaten the rest of his county career

  • JG2704 on May 11, 2012, 15:20 GMT

    @landsite on (May 10 2012, 19:57 PM GMT) Do you mean to tell me you are not an England fan? I thought such complimentary comments would indicate that you were

  • riverlime on May 11, 2012, 10:24 GMT

    The fact that even the "you-shall-not-pass!" Chanderpaul got out cheaply suggests that batting conditions are less than ideal. The only real predictive point to note from the West Indian batting performance is the battling half century from Bravo. He was noticeably hurt when he was out in his final innings against Australia, a look in his eyes that I recognised from another , similar, batsman. Lets hope he uses that pain to good effect next week.

  • CricketingStargazer on May 11, 2012, 9:28 GMT

    landl47: totally agree. The side playing Tests in may always gets the short straw and it is always the weakest draw cards. Frankly, I wouldn't even put Meaker & Dernbach in my 3rd string England attack right now. In their case I think that the LIons game is more to do with checking them out with a view to ODIs later in the season. It's a tribute to the strength of the Surrey attack, but says more of how effective they are in "English conditions" than any great fear that batsmen may have for their life when facing them. What will be interesting will be to see how the West Indies attack fares: it's underrated, but has given good sides problems over the last year or so.

  • 5wombats on May 11, 2012, 9:25 GMT

    @jmcilhinney on (May 11 2012, 06:01 AM GMT) - agreed. There is something to worry about when the likes of @jonesy, @randy and the serried ranks of india followers aren't lining up to have a poke. Jealousy; Guess that's just the price England are paying for success. ..."nefarious intentions" - nice phrase! Have to remember that one :-)

  • jmcilhinney on May 11, 2012, 6:10 GMT

    There's no doubt that batting conditions are tough at the moment, as the raft of low scores in the CC demonstrate, but the fact that WI top three failed repeatedly in home conditions recently suggests that maybe they just aren't up to it at the moment. They may well improve with time but it's going to be a tough time for the team and for the fans. Is there anyone better to replace them with though? Whatever his flaws, it's hard to see Gayle not opening the batting for the Test side ASAP unless the incumbents turn things around very quickly. From the information available Bravo continues to impress, and Chanderpaul has to fail now and again so there's probably no need to be concerned about him just yet. The real test will be how the bowlers perform on day 2. Bowling fast in cold conditions is no fun but it should be much easier for them to adjust in these helpful conditions than for the batsmen so there will be cause for concern if the Lions put on a big score.

  • on May 11, 2012, 6:05 GMT

    @ Sean S. Jodhan, I was referring to the recent series against Australia... Sammy's average was much higher than Deonarine... In fact Deonarine's average was lower than a Guyana dollar...... Sammy is not the problem..... every time Sammy bats you guys want him make hundreds while Deonarine and co. are well accepted with their 20's and 30's.... then Sammy must get five wickets each time he bowls, but Bishoo can get zero and cost us a test match and then you ppl still boast he is the best spinner in the region..... well perhaps he is the best spinner when he is intoxicated... as for Chanders unlike you insular gives I will say proudly Chanders is a king!!!! But Sammy averaged over 50 in the one day series and you guys deliberately ignored that..... We shall continue to improve under Sammy

  • jmcilhinney on May 11, 2012, 6:01 GMT

    @Meety on (May 11 2012, 02:04 AM GMT), that may be why sensible, objective fans such as yourself are interested in this story: because this match is the closest thing to Test cricket going at the moment. You want to actually comment on the story but you know as well as I that the people the wombats are referring to have far more nefarious intentions.

  • Meety on May 12, 2012, 6:06 GMT

    @jmchilhinney - wasn't meaning to actually bag the scheduling, I understand that from an Ozzy perspective, an English summer is a bit of a misnomer! LOL! At the end of the day, England is the only country that has conditions like this that tests are constantly played in - although, NZ & our very own Hobart can sometimes match it! As for the Wombats - yep, I know what he is talking about, but there really hasn't been much other than IPL to read/comment on!

  • JG2704 on May 11, 2012, 15:27 GMT

    @AKS - Forgot about SJ but I see a fellow Somerset fan has answered that

  • JG2704 on May 11, 2012, 15:25 GMT

    @AKS286 on (May 10 2012, 21:09 PM GMT) SH and MH are way off the side. Tres retired from internationals due to his depression illness although he was the best county batsmen by far last season. Unfortunately he has had some ankle injuries which look like they might threaten the rest of his county career

  • JG2704 on May 11, 2012, 15:20 GMT

    @landsite on (May 10 2012, 19:57 PM GMT) Do you mean to tell me you are not an England fan? I thought such complimentary comments would indicate that you were

  • riverlime on May 11, 2012, 10:24 GMT

    The fact that even the "you-shall-not-pass!" Chanderpaul got out cheaply suggests that batting conditions are less than ideal. The only real predictive point to note from the West Indian batting performance is the battling half century from Bravo. He was noticeably hurt when he was out in his final innings against Australia, a look in his eyes that I recognised from another , similar, batsman. Lets hope he uses that pain to good effect next week.

  • CricketingStargazer on May 11, 2012, 9:28 GMT

    landl47: totally agree. The side playing Tests in may always gets the short straw and it is always the weakest draw cards. Frankly, I wouldn't even put Meaker & Dernbach in my 3rd string England attack right now. In their case I think that the LIons game is more to do with checking them out with a view to ODIs later in the season. It's a tribute to the strength of the Surrey attack, but says more of how effective they are in "English conditions" than any great fear that batsmen may have for their life when facing them. What will be interesting will be to see how the West Indies attack fares: it's underrated, but has given good sides problems over the last year or so.

  • 5wombats on May 11, 2012, 9:25 GMT

    @jmcilhinney on (May 11 2012, 06:01 AM GMT) - agreed. There is something to worry about when the likes of @jonesy, @randy and the serried ranks of india followers aren't lining up to have a poke. Jealousy; Guess that's just the price England are paying for success. ..."nefarious intentions" - nice phrase! Have to remember that one :-)

  • jmcilhinney on May 11, 2012, 6:10 GMT

    There's no doubt that batting conditions are tough at the moment, as the raft of low scores in the CC demonstrate, but the fact that WI top three failed repeatedly in home conditions recently suggests that maybe they just aren't up to it at the moment. They may well improve with time but it's going to be a tough time for the team and for the fans. Is there anyone better to replace them with though? Whatever his flaws, it's hard to see Gayle not opening the batting for the Test side ASAP unless the incumbents turn things around very quickly. From the information available Bravo continues to impress, and Chanderpaul has to fail now and again so there's probably no need to be concerned about him just yet. The real test will be how the bowlers perform on day 2. Bowling fast in cold conditions is no fun but it should be much easier for them to adjust in these helpful conditions than for the batsmen so there will be cause for concern if the Lions put on a big score.

  • on May 11, 2012, 6:05 GMT

    @ Sean S. Jodhan, I was referring to the recent series against Australia... Sammy's average was much higher than Deonarine... In fact Deonarine's average was lower than a Guyana dollar...... Sammy is not the problem..... every time Sammy bats you guys want him make hundreds while Deonarine and co. are well accepted with their 20's and 30's.... then Sammy must get five wickets each time he bowls, but Bishoo can get zero and cost us a test match and then you ppl still boast he is the best spinner in the region..... well perhaps he is the best spinner when he is intoxicated... as for Chanders unlike you insular gives I will say proudly Chanders is a king!!!! But Sammy averaged over 50 in the one day series and you guys deliberately ignored that..... We shall continue to improve under Sammy

  • jmcilhinney on May 11, 2012, 6:01 GMT

    @Meety on (May 11 2012, 02:04 AM GMT), that may be why sensible, objective fans such as yourself are interested in this story: because this match is the closest thing to Test cricket going at the moment. You want to actually comment on the story but you know as well as I that the people the wombats are referring to have far more nefarious intentions.

  • on May 11, 2012, 5:49 GMT

    Those who expect this West Indies team towell in England are certainly dreaming. They must have been watching IPL, which , like wrestling could be deemed a farce. Test cricket has history - country against country is enough to invoke a sense of pride and patriotism. All the comments so far, are reflections of sentiments, rather than knowledge of the history of test cricket.

  • jmcilhinney on May 11, 2012, 5:39 GMT

    @Meety on (May 11 2012, 02:04 AM GMT), quite so. The powers that be have decided that there will pretty much always be two teams visiting per summer and, with Auatralia's ODI series this summer too, even a bit more. As a result it's a fact that the first team to visit is almost always going to get the worst of the conditions and, given that England is really the only Test-playing nation that gets genuinely cold, any team will find those conditions unfamiliar. That said, I have to agree with a few other posters that a team from a warm country visiting England and playing in cold and seaming conditions is really just equivalent to England visiting, for example, SL and playing in hot and spinning conditions. Remember that the Barmy Army are getting their shirts off with the temperature in the teens so you know that an England player needing an icepack on his head to keep from exploding, where even the locals need icepacks, is not natural.

  • Alexei on May 11, 2012, 5:35 GMT

    I don't know what all the fuss is abt tho... Alot of county championship teams have been routed out below 200 as well and those teams are playing in conditions they're used too.. Kent is currently 24/5! So what made anyone think the WI to fear any better... besides I expect them to come good when the series begins, that's normally the case

  • cracker2012 on May 11, 2012, 2:54 GMT

    Ok. I am a West Indian and I think that this might be a waste of time. Recall the team, continue Otis and Sammy's intense training.

    It might be better if Gayle went to Somerset.

  • Meety on May 11, 2012, 2:04 GMT

    @AdrianVanDenStael - interesting analysis. Its unfortunate that the FTP schedule really demands most years at least 2 different touring parties, as it really does seem a bit rough. @5wombats - re: why interested in the page? Have a look around - there's almost nothing else worth commenting on!!!

  • jmcilhinney on May 11, 2012, 1:56 GMT

    Interesting that Gnasher says that Meaker was the best of the bowlers when Brooks had the same number of wickets with nearly half the economy rate. I guess I didn't see any of the play so Meaker may have been troubling the batsmen more often and I guess that one over to Bravo particularly cost Meaker.

  • jmcilhinney on May 11, 2012, 1:48 GMT

    @whatawicket on (May 10 2012, 17:49 PM GMT), especially given that Denbach didn't even play cricket in SA. Those England scouts must have a REALLY good eye. RandyOZ recently said that if you don't go through the system in a country then you shouldn't be able to play for that country, so I guess that he must have no issue with Dernbach at least. Not that the majority of England fans really believe that Dernbach has what it takes to be a Test bowler any time soon, but it is nice to see that even our also-rans can play up to Australian Test standard.

  • sugars on May 11, 2012, 1:45 GMT

    well its so pleasant to see that sammy not getting the blame for west indies folding for 147..all those who thought he was affecting the balance of the team had their wish and what happened the team failed without sammy.whats affecting the balance of the team is the over celebrated stars that you guys constantly call for on the team yet they cant cut it an international level.

  • jmcilhinney on May 11, 2012, 1:30 GMT

    I guess RandyOZ and jonesy2 must be keeping tabs on this match because they want to compare how England do against WI compared to Australia. So far they've seen England's (at best) third string bowlers blow WI away for less than Australia could manage in three Tests in WI. Their comments reveal their fear at how poorly Australia are likely to do when they come over next year to lose the Ashes for the third straight time.

  • on May 10, 2012, 23:21 GMT

    winides top 3 are useless, if you argue otherwise you no nothing about cricket folks! i have not seen them hit the ball of the middle of the bat for months now!... where is Gayle?

  • Optic on May 10, 2012, 22:42 GMT

    @landsite Just wanted to point a few things out for you, how is a team coming over to England in early season any different than gong to say SA when the pitches are at it's fastest, or SL when the temperatures are nearly hitting 120, or Aus and playing at the WACA. That is what touring and home advantage is, if you don't like it I'd advise you to go find another sport to watch because this one isn't for you. Another thing, you do know that England have beaten nearly all the teams you've listed in the height of our summer and are a far far better team than all those at home. I'd also like you to point out all these England fans getting carried away after one day of a B team game. That's the point though, WI even with one or two missing are not fairing very well against a Second team. Also on what planet was Amir the best fast bowler in the world, he had lots of potential but was no where near the best fast bowler in the world, he averaged nearly 30 for pete's sake.

  • landl47 on May 10, 2012, 22:26 GMT

    Given that this is England's third string bowling attack, they did a pretty good job. It's tough for the WI to have to play in these conditions, though.

  • cbradbury on May 10, 2012, 22:24 GMT

    If the Lions can bowl the West Indies out for 147 what would they do to Australia? I can't believe that is the Ashes next year - hardly worth watching - the Australians are five years off being competitive...

  • Munkeymomo on May 10, 2012, 21:45 GMT

    @AKS Trescothick is still one of the best batsmen in the country (way better than Strauss), but he can't play int. anymore due to illness. Harmison, Hoggard are past it and Jones is always injured, but still bowls 90+ in the 3 games a year he plays.

  • AKS286 on May 10, 2012, 21:19 GMT

    i read many comments about gayle return. fact gayle never perform when team is struggling. the performance in the league match are fantastic but on the final gayle 10 out of 9 times he failed and his batting on final match is like test match. sorry fans but its true. lots of comment gayle,bravo,pollard will join then this and that. but the fact is WI will be same no progress will happen. when gayle, bravo were played for WI the ranking is similar compare to current. gayle, bravo will come to international side and the matches against bangldsh & zim still very difficult to say which team will won,

  • CricketingStargazer on May 10, 2012, 21:09 GMT

    I just wonder whose idea it was that 2 games in early May would be sufficient preparation for a 3-Test series. There always used to be a tradition of offering tourists a one-day match or two (e.g. against the Duchess of Norfolk's XI) to help them adapt. It's a pity that with the Sussex match heading for a soggy draw it was possible to arrange something at short notice, for example, even with a Minor County who had a playable ground: I'm sure that some of them would have jumped at the chance to play host to the West Indies for a day in an emergency. That said, the encounter with what is no better than England's third-string attack in unfriendly conditions may even have done more harm than good to the confidence of the batsmen.

  • AKS286 on May 10, 2012, 21:09 GMT

    can any one tell me where is harmison, hoggard, simon jones, will these players play for england. trescothick can play international t20 he is in still gud touch. strauss can bat on no .3 position cook and trescothick is still effective opening option for eng

  • yorkshirematt on May 10, 2012, 21:02 GMT

    @landsite So by your logic England should also have refused to tour Sri Lanka when the weather was at it's hottest. As much as opponents of english cricket like a good conspiracy theory, even the ECB can't control the weather. Anyway I'm sure they would rather have four baking hot days to get the money in and get a result than three rain affected draws and sparse crowds

  • Technical-1 on May 10, 2012, 20:57 GMT

    West Indies Top order sucks! Period! Thanks to Otis and Hilaire.. Dumb Skunts.

  • on May 10, 2012, 20:47 GMT

    Someone need to tell this dude here that sammy avg is not higher that Deonarine ....and Who is WI ROCK BATSMAN???? U R A REAL CLOWN

  • on May 10, 2012, 19:57 GMT

    where are those Guyanese and their pals who said Sammy is the problem.... Did Sammy play today???? Our problem has nothing to do with Sammy or at least not so much Sammy as many will have us believe.........Sammy's batting average was higher than all the openers and Deonarine, so then if that is the argument, then maybe Deonarine shouldnt be in the team..... If Bishoo took two wickets in the 1st test against Australia we would have won......

  • landsite on May 10, 2012, 19:57 GMT

    If I were an English fan I wont get carried away because you beat a depleted Windian team in Wintry conditions add a little Monsoon to that and you have it made to measure.I feel the Caribbean cricket authorities should have refused to tour at such time because its definitely what England need to beat the likes of India,Windies,Pakistan and Bangladesh,in sunshine they are not that good.There is still a chance that Windies could pull of a shock win because they do have a very good pace attack,we wont win the series that is in no doubt but we could cause you a few problems,just let the sun shine.Pakistan only recently put a proper licking on England with all their top players and Pak was missing the best fast bowler in the world plus their first choice opener and another top Pak fast bowler in Asif,so just hold up a bit before because Windies are well and truly handicapped.

  • JG2704 on May 10, 2012, 19:48 GMT

    Certainly not a good idea to get too carried away. This is WIs 1st full inns over here and it may have been very tough batting conds. It was good to see our bowlers sharing the wickets but to be honest none of the bowlers are anywhere near the 1st team. It'll be interesting to see how the batsmen perform tomorrow as there are possibly 1 or 2 places up for grabs. On current - and I don't want to jinx him - form Nick Compton should be in with a shout. More interested to see how the batsmen do for this reason

  • Nathaniel45 on May 10, 2012, 19:47 GMT

    Undeniably difficult conditions and one doesn't want to be too harsh but Barath's technique is just far too loose. Anderson will have him for breakfast every time. Only Bravo has even looked like coping in the first two matches and although Shiv is bound to score some runs if your top three aren't scoring there's very little you can do unless the remarkable occurs. Powell gets in and gets out. Maybe Fudadin should stop travelling and start playing as well? And criminal, absolutely criminal, to be dropping catches in these sort of games. All these players are fighting for an England spot - you can't give them a second chance by dropping them in the gully. That said, consistency wouldn't go a miss Ravi and Fidel. Going to be an extremely tough tour. My guess is that Sarwan will be called up for the second test. I also bet that Gayle will win the ODI series for the West Indies.

  • on May 10, 2012, 19:37 GMT

    jonesy2.....always good for a laugh!...lol.....Please don't stop posting and that goes to you RandyOz...the 2 best exponents of England baiting on the planet...lol.....I'm hoping the ACB book a match against my local club team during the ashes next summer, it's the only chance of your hopeless cricketers winning a game!

  • Nandans_devils on May 10, 2012, 19:03 GMT

    Somehow i always feel that WI can still compete! common guys just watch Fire in Babylon before the 1st test.WI fans dont expect song atleast clear your throat and hum ... common windies your name has both WIN & DIEs choose the later part

  • AdrianVanDenStael on May 10, 2012, 19:02 GMT

    This modern pattern in England of having tests start in May with usually a shorter series first ahead of a longer series later in the summer, is relatively new, beginning in 2000 (previously the first test of the summer tended to take place in June). Since then these early-season series have tended to produce some poor cricket and England's record in these matches is W 22 D 7 L 2. England haven't lost a test which ended earlier than 4th June this century. Partly this is because the early-season series tends to be against poor teams, but mainly it's because the tourists are playing in unfamiliar conditions, friendly to England-style seamers, and are poorly prepared, having few opportunities for practice on tour ahead particularly of the early tests. None of this is the fault of the WICB or the WI players, but history suggests that the West Indies best hope in this series is for two rain-affected draws to give them a chance to acclimitise, before they take the last test and the series.

  • Tlotoxl on May 10, 2012, 18:44 GMT

    @jonesy: is that even a serious question? The lions is a development squad not the full test, "a" or even "b" team. Anderson, Broad, Bresnan, Finn, Onions, Swann, Tremlett, Panesar, Shazad & Tredwell are all ahead of the lions bowlers, Bresnan is a bowler who has won every one of the games he has played in, has a bowling average of only 24 and a batting average of over 40 and still struggles to make the test team!

  • 5wombats on May 10, 2012, 18:41 GMT

    Looks like the rubbish merchants; @G.Sri, @Randy are here as per usual. Question - why this interest in an England A game? If England are so useless - why are you even looking? Or is it envy? The wombats know the answer....

  • on May 10, 2012, 18:39 GMT

    Since the world cup last year West Indies has played thirteen test matches, and they are still struggling to find a opening pair. With such a weak top order and the cold conditions in England it will take more than a wish for our young team to come good. Many will argue that the team has shown fight, i will not dispute that but if they cannot sustain that fight over four innings or five days we are not going to win. I am a proud West Indian and i wish my team well,but we cannot or should no close our eyes to the truth. Our team is young yes young and inexperience.

  • on May 10, 2012, 18:39 GMT

    Since the world cup last year West Indies has played thirteen test matches, and they are still struggling to find a opening pair. With such a weak top order and the cold conditions in England it will take more than a wish for our young team to come good. Many will argue that the team has shown fight, i will not dispute that but if they cannot sustain that fight over four innings or five days we are not going to win. I am a proud West Indian and i wish my team well,but we cannot or should no close our eyes to the truth. Our team is young yes young and inexperience.

  • butterhandsfingers on May 10, 2012, 18:26 GMT

    jonesy2 if Bairstow scores 500 off 150 balls tomorrow: Oh my God, seriously, is this the future of England's batting? I knew they were in trouble, but wow, they have absolutely no talent, gosh, golly, they really are terrible

  • simonviller on May 10, 2012, 18:21 GMT

    Dear , oh dear ! Is Barath ever going to get it ? Maybe WI should have tried DR Smith as an opener instead ,with his English experience ;couldn't have done any worse .

  • PunchDrunkPunter on May 10, 2012, 18:07 GMT

    No Broad, no Anderson, no Finn, no Bresnan, no Tremlett, no Onions, no Shahzad, no Swann, no Panesar and no Tredwell. Yet we still bowled out a front line West Indies batting line up for 147!!! Australia's 1st choice attack couldn't do that on the bowler friendly tracks in the West Indies!

  • Ingerland on May 10, 2012, 18:00 GMT

    re jonesy2. This is the lions squad. It's pretty much the development squad. We still managed to get them out for 140...more like worrying times for WI.

  • whatawicket on May 10, 2012, 17:49 GMT

    u are so right randy both were so near to making appearances for SA at 11 and 13 years of age the saffers must have bust a gut at loosing out to such talent then. englands luck that they can find boys, that 10/11 years down the line can play for the england lions.

  • yorkshire-86 on May 10, 2012, 17:48 GMT

    What exactly is the point in picking Carberry for the Lions? I always thought the Lions squad was for youngsters and players with the potential to play for the full England XI? Carberry is neither - he is a grizzled old veteran of the county circuit who has been given enough chances at the top and has failed every time. Reminds me of when they kept picking Rob Key (and worse, making him captain) and far better players, such as Cook, Godleman, and Gale couldnt get a lookin - and why pick someone as captain whos captaincy record consists of a highlight of taking the best team of the year down into Division Two?

  • Al11 on May 10, 2012, 17:31 GMT

    People stop comparing the 09 WI team (@ Lords) with this current touring team....the current team has much better bowling...and the 09 team had much better batting....the WI is now crying for a mixture of both...147 all out against the Lions!!!!!...what will happen against the like of Anderson and Broad?....

  • bobmartin on May 10, 2012, 17:26 GMT

    @ jonesy2 on (May 10 2012, 14:42 PM GMT) .. When are you going to come up with something original to write or is a sensible discussion on cricket beyond your juvenile capabilities

  • on May 10, 2012, 17:24 GMT

    In many ways Ottis Gibson only has himself to blame because one of the first things he did when he was appointed in 2010 was clear out the senior players.

    He wanted to start with a brand new team - it was as if he wasn't satisfied with the attitude and commitment of some of the senior players. He wanted to start over.

    When you take that approach you have to rely on your youngsters but the reality is that it takes a very, very long time to build a team.

    Most sides have players or squad members who can be difficult at times but the answer isn't simply to get rid of them - otherwise you get nowhere.

    What you need to do is convince the senior players that your way is the way to go. That is what man-management is all about. Tackling issues head on and bringing players back into the fold. If you can't do that then you do have a serious problem.

  • SICHO on May 10, 2012, 17:09 GMT

    I tell you what, with these conditions in England boy oh boy the Eng-SA series is going to be a cracker

  • Silva-Surfa on May 10, 2012, 16:36 GMT

    In reply to Al Willmott, you make some valid points but i just wanted to address your comments a little. Firstly i think it's a little unfair to put all the blame on the WICB. Yes, some of their decisions and methods lack subtlety, but in regards to having first choice players in the side, most of these guys haven't got a central-contract and it doesn't match anywhere near what they could get playing cricket-for-hire in various tournaments around the world, as well as the schedules clashing. Also if i recall correctly, Gayle, Sarwan, Nash and Dwayne Bravo played at Lords in 2009 and that match didn't go into the 4th day, so it just illustrates that the grass isn't always greener and regardless of who the personnel is in the team, our batsmen are going to struggle in these conditions. It's just a question of whether the Class of 2012 can learn from the warm-up matches and work on their temperament and discipline, to at the very least make this series competitive for England.

  • Srini_Indian on May 10, 2012, 16:32 GMT

    So another SA player is the star for English so-called "Lions".

  • Percy_Fender on May 10, 2012, 16:17 GMT

    I would like Shannon Gabriel in for Lord's . He seems a great fast bowler in the West Indian tradition of the past.England would have been in for a real look into their No 1 position

  • Peterincanada on May 10, 2012, 15:51 GMT

    @Scott Robbins It certainly does not bode well for WI. Anybody who didn't see this coming was not thinking straight. The only hope is for bright sunshine throughout the whole tour. If the ball swings or seams they re dead meat.

  • cricketdebator on May 10, 2012, 15:19 GMT

    Those of you who are dwelling on the fact that there is too much inexperience at the top of the balling line-up, why not suggest that Chanderpaul (with all his experience) bat in the No 3 position? After all, Dravid (at a similar age) did likewise for India in England last year, with much success. It is my contention that in the present circumstances, Chanderpaul should bat at No.3 and help set the platform for the younger, less experience batsmen to build on. Whatever the case, we have to persist with the youngsters, keep on supporting and give them every chance to succeed, since they are doing no worse than the touring team to England in 2009, which, (with Gayle as captain and including all the so-called stars), lost the first test at Lord's in less than 3 days. Conversely, I have a feeling that this team will prevail even against the overwhelming odds. Let's wait and see.

  • RandyOZ on May 10, 2012, 15:17 GMT

    Dernbach and Meaker ey? Looks like there are no longer just South Africans batting for England

  • jonesy2 on May 10, 2012, 14:42 GMT

    is this seriously the england a side? they have no bowlers whatsoever! haha my goodness this is very worrying from an england cricket point of view

  • lyl67 on May 10, 2012, 14:08 GMT

    Kirk Edwards is a promising cricketer,however I feel he will struggle in England if he has not sort out his off side play because at present he is a leg side player and will suffer if he does not adjust. Why have West Indies sent a side so inexperience to England so early in the year? maybe they want England to retain No.1 status a little bit longer.

  • legend_963 on May 10, 2012, 13:47 GMT

    "rest" darren sammy, is he that important to west indies cricket?

  • gloriouscricket on May 10, 2012, 13:17 GMT

    Windies needs to figure out the opening partnerships quickly;There is way too much inexperience at the top,the ball will seam in England,Barath will have to be moved from that position if he continues to fail.Playing off the back-foot against the ball that is moving presents high risk of being out early..it,s time to try Ramdin @ the opening position along with Powell & or Kirk Edwards[who is in need of a long innings].Way too much inexperience at the top. Lets hope Deonarine will be able to get a visa.He is sorely needed,Lets see how Edwards handles the team. Good luck Windies.

  • jmcilhinney on May 10, 2012, 13:14 GMT

    Conditions are tough, no doubt, but it's of grave concern that the WI top 3 failed yet again. I don't see Gayle as a saviour, especially in Test cricket, but surely he'd do better at the top than this. Chanderpaul was their rock against Australia but even he has to fail occasionally. Better he does it in a warmup than in the Tests though, although he may do it both. Seems like maybe Bravo decided that attack was the best form of defence once Chanderpaul went. They could have pushed and poked and wound getting skittled for next to nothing. At least that way they might score a few before capitulating, if in deed that is what they do. Given that they have just this one warmup game after the previous one was washed out, it seems a strange decision to rest Sammy. He's not their best performer with either bat or ball so surely he needs the time on the field as much as anyone.

  • on May 10, 2012, 13:01 GMT

    OK imagine the current west indies test team facing an alternative XI like below:

    Current: Adrian Barath Kirk Edwards Keiran Powell Darren Bravo Shiv Chanderpaul Narsingh Deonarine Dinesh Ramdin Darren Sammy Ravi Rampaul / Fidel Edwards Shane Shillingford Kemar Roach

    Alternative: Chris Gayle Johnson Charles / Kraigg Brathwaite Ramnaresh Sarwan Keiron Pollard Brendan Nash Dwayne Bravo Carlton Baugh Andre Russell Jerome Taylor Sunil Narine Div Bishoo

    ok - Not everyone in this side might not necessarily represent the best alternative XI but this surely goes to highlight the failure to maximise the best talent for West Indian Test Match Cricket. Don't shoot yourselves in the foot WICB!

  • on May 10, 2012, 13:01 GMT

    It's early days but it doesn't bode well for the test match next week. The batting is fragile as it is, so the lack of match practice and a taster of conditions in England is becoming a stark reality for the Windies batsmen. Winning or losing is irrelevant at this point, it's more important for the boys to get as much playing time as possible. Let's hope that Bravo, Samuels and Ramdin can spend some time in the middle, just to get familiar with what's ahead of them in the coming weeks.

  • No featured comments at the moment.

  • on May 10, 2012, 13:01 GMT

    It's early days but it doesn't bode well for the test match next week. The batting is fragile as it is, so the lack of match practice and a taster of conditions in England is becoming a stark reality for the Windies batsmen. Winning or losing is irrelevant at this point, it's more important for the boys to get as much playing time as possible. Let's hope that Bravo, Samuels and Ramdin can spend some time in the middle, just to get familiar with what's ahead of them in the coming weeks.

  • on May 10, 2012, 13:01 GMT

    OK imagine the current west indies test team facing an alternative XI like below:

    Current: Adrian Barath Kirk Edwards Keiran Powell Darren Bravo Shiv Chanderpaul Narsingh Deonarine Dinesh Ramdin Darren Sammy Ravi Rampaul / Fidel Edwards Shane Shillingford Kemar Roach

    Alternative: Chris Gayle Johnson Charles / Kraigg Brathwaite Ramnaresh Sarwan Keiron Pollard Brendan Nash Dwayne Bravo Carlton Baugh Andre Russell Jerome Taylor Sunil Narine Div Bishoo

    ok - Not everyone in this side might not necessarily represent the best alternative XI but this surely goes to highlight the failure to maximise the best talent for West Indian Test Match Cricket. Don't shoot yourselves in the foot WICB!

  • jmcilhinney on May 10, 2012, 13:14 GMT

    Conditions are tough, no doubt, but it's of grave concern that the WI top 3 failed yet again. I don't see Gayle as a saviour, especially in Test cricket, but surely he'd do better at the top than this. Chanderpaul was their rock against Australia but even he has to fail occasionally. Better he does it in a warmup than in the Tests though, although he may do it both. Seems like maybe Bravo decided that attack was the best form of defence once Chanderpaul went. They could have pushed and poked and wound getting skittled for next to nothing. At least that way they might score a few before capitulating, if in deed that is what they do. Given that they have just this one warmup game after the previous one was washed out, it seems a strange decision to rest Sammy. He's not their best performer with either bat or ball so surely he needs the time on the field as much as anyone.

  • gloriouscricket on May 10, 2012, 13:17 GMT

    Windies needs to figure out the opening partnerships quickly;There is way too much inexperience at the top,the ball will seam in England,Barath will have to be moved from that position if he continues to fail.Playing off the back-foot against the ball that is moving presents high risk of being out early..it,s time to try Ramdin @ the opening position along with Powell & or Kirk Edwards[who is in need of a long innings].Way too much inexperience at the top. Lets hope Deonarine will be able to get a visa.He is sorely needed,Lets see how Edwards handles the team. Good luck Windies.

  • legend_963 on May 10, 2012, 13:47 GMT

    "rest" darren sammy, is he that important to west indies cricket?

  • lyl67 on May 10, 2012, 14:08 GMT

    Kirk Edwards is a promising cricketer,however I feel he will struggle in England if he has not sort out his off side play because at present he is a leg side player and will suffer if he does not adjust. Why have West Indies sent a side so inexperience to England so early in the year? maybe they want England to retain No.1 status a little bit longer.

  • jonesy2 on May 10, 2012, 14:42 GMT

    is this seriously the england a side? they have no bowlers whatsoever! haha my goodness this is very worrying from an england cricket point of view

  • RandyOZ on May 10, 2012, 15:17 GMT

    Dernbach and Meaker ey? Looks like there are no longer just South Africans batting for England

  • cricketdebator on May 10, 2012, 15:19 GMT

    Those of you who are dwelling on the fact that there is too much inexperience at the top of the balling line-up, why not suggest that Chanderpaul (with all his experience) bat in the No 3 position? After all, Dravid (at a similar age) did likewise for India in England last year, with much success. It is my contention that in the present circumstances, Chanderpaul should bat at No.3 and help set the platform for the younger, less experience batsmen to build on. Whatever the case, we have to persist with the youngsters, keep on supporting and give them every chance to succeed, since they are doing no worse than the touring team to England in 2009, which, (with Gayle as captain and including all the so-called stars), lost the first test at Lord's in less than 3 days. Conversely, I have a feeling that this team will prevail even against the overwhelming odds. Let's wait and see.

  • Peterincanada on May 10, 2012, 15:51 GMT

    @Scott Robbins It certainly does not bode well for WI. Anybody who didn't see this coming was not thinking straight. The only hope is for bright sunshine throughout the whole tour. If the ball swings or seams they re dead meat.