Second Test Match

West Indies v England

At Port-of-Spain, Trinidad, January 28, 29, 30. February 1, 2, 3. England won by 256 runs after one of the most dramatic Test matches for many years. Excitement was intense throughout and it led to an unfortunate and remarkable scene on the third day. A crowd of almost 30,000, a record for any sporting event in the West Indies, became so inflamed that soon after tea tempers boiled over and a few hooligans began throwing bottles on to the outfield. This started an orgy of bottle-throwing and a large part of the crowd wandered on to the playing area. Things became so bad that a riot developed. The England players were escorted from the field, though no animosity was being shown to them. No further play was possible that day. Bottles were also thrown at Georgetown on the previous M.C.C. tour six years earlier but on that occasion the cricket was resumed after a short delay. During the match players on both sides were told to play their parts in avoiding incidents by accepting umpiring decisions without quibble and by walking immediately they were given out.

Statham, fit again, replaced Moss and West Indies brought in Solomon and Singh for McMorris and Scarlett. May won the toss again on a pitch faster than at Bridgetown, but England were soon in trouble. After doing little for half an hour, Hall and Watson changed ends and unleashed a blistering attack of bumpers and short-pitched balls which sent England reeling to 57 for three with Pullar, Cowdrey and May gone. Barrington and Dexter brought a fine recovery with a stand of 142 in two hours thirty-seven minutes. At one point Hall was cautioned by the umpire, Lloyd, for excessive use of short-pitched ball in accordance with Law 46. England finished the first day with 220 runs for four wickets and next morning Barrington and Smith continued the improvement. The other umpire, Lee Kow, cautioned Watson for infringing Law 46 early in the day and after that there were only a few short balls.

Barrington batted five hours fifty minutes for his second successive Test century in his only two innings against West Indies. Smith, ninth out, stayed almost five hours for 108. Hunte and Solomon were also subjected to bouncers from Trueman and Statham when they batted for the last twenty-six minutes on the second day, but for the rest of the match there was no further trouble with this type of bowling.

On the dynamic third day West Indies broke down badly in face of England's deadly accurate fast attack. Eight wickets were down for 98 when the bottle-throwing began. The atmosphere on the last three days was calm and peaceful. England steadily built a powerful position. May did not enforce the follow-on when leading by 270 and although wickets fell steadily, a stand of 68 in fifty minutes came from Illingworth and Trueman.

May declared after an hour on the fifth morning, leaving West Indies to get 501 to win in ten hours. No side had ever scored so many in winning a Test. West Indies, somewhat naturally, tried to play for a draw. At the end of the fifth day two wickets were down for 134, but the early loss of Sobers and Worrell next morning were severe blows for them. Kanhai made a great effort, staying six hours eighteen minutes for 110 which included one 6 and nineteen 4's, but England were not to be denied and with the last three wickets falling at the same total they won with an hour and fifty minutes to spare. The attendance of almost 100,000 and the receipts were both records for a match in the West Indies.

© John Wisden & Co
 
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