Third Test match

England v West Indies 1928

Played at KENNINGTON OVAL, Saturday, Monday, Tuesday, August 11, 13, 14. England won by an innings and 71 runs. The Third Test match took much the same course as that at Manchester, the West Indies making a good start in batting, but being badly outplayed afterwards, and little cricket on the third day being required to finish off the game in a victory for England by an innings and 71 runs. St Hill, Hoad and Browne, who had been included in the tourists' team at Old Trafford, stood down in favour of Bartlett, Wight, and Small, and in the England Eleven, Leyland, Hendren, Larwood and Duckworth took the places of D. R. Jardine, V. W. C. Jupp, J. C. White and Elliott.

Glorious weather prevailing on Saturday, and the wicket being of a nice easy pace, the West Indies, on winning the toss, had every chance of doing themselves justice. Moreover, Challenor and Roach began the visitors' innings with a partnership which lasted seventy minutes and produced 91 runs. Roach batting in fine determined style, apart from a chance to Chapman when 34, and Challenor playing in a manner worthy of his high reputation, there existed for the moment promise of an interesting struggle but, once the opening stand had come to an end, the opposition to the England bowling proved so moderate that the last nine wickets went down for the addition of 147 runs. Even before lunch the excellent start had been largely discounted, for, following upon the dismissal of Roach, a catch at slip disposed of Challenor and a splendid ball sent back Nunes, the total with three men out being no more than 113. On resuming, the sixth wicket fell at 177. Thirteen runs later the seventh wicket should have fallen, but, Hammond letting off Constantine at slip when 7, that batsman and Wight added 54 in half an hour. Then came such a complete collapse that the last three wickets produced only 7 runs, West Indies being all out for 238 - their largest total in any of the Test matches. While the general result of the visitors' efforts was thus so disappointing, Martin - fifth man out - defended skillfully for an hour and a half, Scott, playing Freeman particularly well, drove hard and cleanly, and Constantine, profiting by his escape, hit up 37 in three-quarters of an hour. Tate and Larwood bowled very well and, although three catches were missed, England on the whole fielded smartly. Duckworth kept wicket in capital form, giving away only 2 byes, and these off a ball on the leg side.

In the downfall of the last six wickets, Chapman played a great part, bringing off four catches-three extremely brilliant and the other an effort rather out of the common. His first success was one at short leg from a very hard hit by Martin. He next disposed of Constantine, running across from deep mid-on right behind the bowler to reach the ball, and finally came two sparkling catches at second slip in following overs from Tate-one wide and almost on the ground with the left hand, and the other almost as wide and low with the right hand. Quite a feature of the day was the prompt effect of a change of bowling. Larwood, on going on for the second time, knocked down Roach's off stump first ball. Challenor was out in the first over delivered by Leyland, and Bartlett fell to the first ball Larwood sent down after lunch, while just at the end of the innings, Freeman, on resuming, disposed in his first over of Small, and Tate, coming on just afterwards got rid in his first over of Wight.

Hobbs and Sutcliffe gave England a splendid start, withstanding the West Indies' attack for just over two hours, and raising the score to 155 before a yorker dismissed Sutcliffe. In so doing, the famous pair shared for the eleventh time in Test match cricket in a three-figure first-wicket partnership. Sutcliffe began a little unevenly, and might have been caught off his glove in the slips for a single, yet he settled down in capital form, and Hobbs' play from the first was admirable. Skilful placing accounted for most of the runs, but Hobbs was always strong on the leg side, and drove hard on occasion, while Sutcliffe brought off some delightful strokes behind the wicket. Consequent upon the great heat, the batsmen turned very quiet for a time, but runs were coming with some freedom again when Francis broke up the partnership. Sutcliffe when 36 should have been caught high up behind the wicket, yet he played attractive cricket. Hobbs, making no mistake, left off not out, 89.

England's batting on Monday was not altogether satisfactory; indeed, some of it might fairly be described as disquieting, for after Hobbs and Ernest Tyldesley had added 129 runs in less than two hours, so raising the total to 284 before the second wicket fell, five men were actually dismissed--all by Griffith--in an hour for 49 more runs. For the moment England looked like being out for a score which, in view of the start given them by Hobbs, Sutcliffe and Tyldesley, must have severely damaged the reputation of the side, and although some spirited hitting produced 105 runs for the last three wickets, an aggregate of 22 for Chapman, Hammond, Hendren and Leyland left a distinctly uneasy feeling. Hobbs, too, was so far from reproducing his form of Saturday that he gave two chances before he had increased his figures from 89 to 100. Still he and Tyldesley, before rain drove the players from the field at twenty minutes past twelve and prevented further cricket until nearly half past two, put on 80 runs in as many minutes. When the game was resumed, the batsmen hit away without real restraint, and added 49 in half an hour before Hobbs brought his innings to an end by placing a ball into short legs hands. Apart from the two chances in the 90's, and one or two wild strokes just at the finish, Hobbs played masterly cricket during a stay of four hours, putting together his eighth 100 of the season, and having twenty 4's as his chief strokes.

Following upon Hobbs' departure at 284, came such a complete transformation that there were seven men out for 333. Tyldesley, who, if rather reckless latterly, played very fine cricket, scoring chiefly by drives and leg hits, fell to a catch in the gully at 305. At the same total Leyland was bowled off his arm, and at 310 a brilliant catch one hand at third slip sent back Hammond. Directly afterwards, Chapman, reaching out, was taken at backward point, and Hendren gave a simple catch to second slip. Griffith, who, resuming at 301, brought about this startling change, secured the five wickets while only 21 runs were obtained off him. He swung away in most pronounced fashion. Despite the failure of so many of their colleagues, Tate and Larwood, each favoured with a little luck at starting, hit away in such vigorous style that they put on 61 runs in twenty-five minutes, Tate having a 6, a 5 and seven 4's in his 54. The 105 runs obtained for the last three wickets were registered in an hour. Altogether England batted rather more than six hours for their total of 438.

Entering upon their second innings 200 in arrear, the West Indies, so far from repeating the fine commencement they had made on Saturday, lost three of their best wickets in an hour for 46 runs, and at the drawing of stumps, despite the stubborn defence of Martin, had four men out for 61. Thus, on Tuesday the tourists, with six wickets to fall, required 139 more runs to avoid a single innings defeat. At no time did they look like escaping that fate. Indeed, the six wickets went down in the course of seventy-five minutes for the addition of 68 runs, the side, after batting two hours and a half in all, being all out for 129. Martin alone offered any serious resistance, that player, who had gone in on the fall of the first wicket at 12, withstanding the England attack for an hour and fifty minutes. Seventh out at 102, he not only showed very skilful defence, but in the final stage of the contest made some capital hits. Tate had seven wickets in the match for 86 runs, Larwood five for 87, and Freeman six for 132, these three bowlers, moreover, scoring 105 runs between them. Only a few hundred people gathered to witness the finish, but during the three days more than 28,000 paid the two shillings admission.

© John Wisden & Co