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Page last updated at 17:54 GMT, Sunday, 17 May 2009 18:54 UK

Jonathan Agnew column

Jonathan Agnew
By Jonathan Agnew
BBC cricket correspondent

Chris Gayle
Gayle smashed a rapid half century at the start of West Indies' second innings

West Indies started their second innings very brightly with Chris Gayle, apparently oblivious of the match situation, playing some astonishing shots.

Twice he launched James Anderson over his head, and the skimming six he smashed off Graham Onions had the spectators at long-on diving for cover.

But having lost three wickets in the late afternoon gloom, including Gayle for an excellent 53, West Indies face an anxious final day as they fight to avoid a second successive defeat.

Devon Smith flattered to deceive again, missing a completely straight ball from Graeme Swann, who has become his nemesis.

It seems incredible that he actually missed the ball, but Swann seems to be able to get him out at any time having now got him five times this year - this was his second ball to him in this innings.


Ramnaresh Sarwan was unlucky to receive a delivery that kept low and trapped him lbw and, just two balls later, Onions had Gayle taken by Andrew Strauss at first slip.

There had been a couple of confident appeals against Gayle for catches behind by the stand-in wicketkeeper Paul Collingwood off the bowling of James Anderson.

On both occasions, slow-motion replays suggested that the umpire was correct in adjudicating not out - only for the snickometer to suggest that the edge, or glove had been found. Hotspot showed nothing, which illustrates why we must continue to be wary of technology.

Stuart Broad
For me, it was Stuart Broad who produced the best bowling

Anderson finished with five wickets in the first innings - the sixth time he has taken five for England - but for me, it was Stuart Broad who produced the best bowling.

Having had Shivnarine Chanderpaul caught behind from round the wicket, Broad produced a steepling short ball that Sarwan, on 100, could only glove to Tim Bresnan in the gully.

It was a tremendous piece of aggressive bowling on such a short pitch and, with the deep square leg and forward short leg, was a fine example of executing a plan to perfection.

Broad had a grumble about bowling on flat pitches on the recent tour of the Caribbean, but I think the experience will be the making of him. He learned the importance of accuracy and also the need for variation, and is greatly improved as a result.

Bresnan, meanwhile, is still searching for his first Test wicket. He should have picked up Sulieman Benn for four when the left-hander nicked him to Prior's left, but the wicketkeeper did not move a muscle and the ball flew, waist high, between the keeper and first slip.

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see also
Buoyant England scenting victory
17 May 09 |  England
Eng v WI: Second Test day four photos
17 May 09 |  England
Strauss hits back over Gayle row
13 May 09 |  Cricket
England seal emphatic Lord's win
08 May 09 |  England
Live cricket on the BBC
26 Oct 11 |  Cricket
West Indies in England 2009
04 Dec 08 |  Cricket

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