Fourth Test Match

West Indies v England

Hall was dropped, and West Indies were short of pace when Griffith suffered a slight leg injury which kept him out of action from the third day until the end. At last West Indies had the better of the early stages. Yet they were finally surprised and beaten by the brilliant batting of Cowdrey and Boycott.

Again rain marred the first day, but on this occasion Camacho was in a very different mood. He played hitherto unrevealed strokes all round the wicket and hit 11 fours while scoring 87 off 40 overs. Kanhai, the main aggressor who hit one six and 19 fours in a brilliant innings of 71 overs, and Nurse dominated the second day's play with their five-hour stand of 273.

Boycott and Cowdrey replied with firmness, and at the close of the next day England were 204 for two, but early on Monday, Rodriguez and Gibbs broke the middle batting. Now Knott proved himself superbly. He batted with the aplomb of a veteran, and his stand with Cowdrey added 113, full of firm strokes, at almost three runs an over.

Butcher, an occasional leg-break bowler, then had astonishing success, starting with a curious caught at the wicket decision against Cowdrey, who batted in dominating fashion for five hours and hit 21 fours. Knott, unbeaten to the end and offering only one very difficult slip catch, batted two and a quarter hours. In three overs, Butcher took four wickets and in his full spell of 10 overs, interrupted by rain, five for 15.

The removal of Cowdrey made a definite result to the match possible, and Butcher's startling success fatally persuaded Sobers that England were peculiarly vulnerable to such bowling. His second innings declaration left England to make 215 in two and three-quarter hours.

The start was encouraging with Boycott and Edrich scoring 55 in 19 overs. A quiet spell followed, but after tea Cowdrey cut loose with Boycott in close attendance. The total went from 73 to 173 in 18 overs before Cowdrey fell. In 76 minutes he had hit 71 with ten fours during a stand of 118.

Now 42 were needed in 35 minutes, and Boycott took charge. His two fours in an over from Gibbs made the total 200 just 17 minutes later. Another 15 minutes, and after nearly four more overs, it was all over. England had won with three minutes to spare, which would have meant eight more balls, and Boycott had paced his innings of 80 in two hours, 42 minutes, to perfection.

© John Wisden & Co