Ggood afternoon and welcome to moving day, when the outcome of this third and decisive Test should become clearer.
As things stand, it’s anyone’s game.
England frustrated by Windies lower order
The tourists were handed a taste of their own medicine yesterday with the West Indies moving into the lead after a bullish lower-order fightback.
Having seen Jack Leach and Saqib Mahmood redeem their own batting collapse with a last-ditch stand worth 90 on the first evening, England had no response for a similar show of resistance led by Josh Da Silva.
The Trinidadian wicketkeeper came to the crease on 95 for six, with a briefly revitalized Chris Woakes having conjured a three-wicket burst just after lunch, but showed real fortitude to lead his side to 232 for eight.
Over the course of his battling 54 not out Da Silva was there to see his side past three figures, beyond 200 and into an eventual lead of 28, all before posting the first half-century of a low-scoring match. With stands of 49 with Alzarri Joseph and an unbroken 55 with Kemar Roach, he may yet have played a decisive hand.
Neither side has been able to hammer home a definitive advantage in this battle for the Richards-Botham Trophy, with both showing their frailties and fortitude at different times, but the hosts have their noses in front.
Woakes happy to be back among the wickets
Following yesterday’s play, Chris Woakes admitted he has fallen short of his best on this tour after being handed the responsibility of leading the attack.
While James Anderson and Stuart Broad were sacrificed in a bid to give the side an injection of new energy for the future, the Warwickshire all-rounder was retained as the senior man in a new-look attack.
He has been unfortunate to assume the responsibility on some of the most docile tracks in recent memory, laboring away for minimal rewards in Antigua and Barbados.
But even on his best day of the tour here in Grenada there was room for improvement, with a tame spell with the new ball in the morning and another wayward stint late on after England entrusted him with the replacement.
By the time England dragged their weary bodies off the pitch yesterday they had allowed the West Indies to escape from deep trouble at 95 for six and into a promising 28-run lead.
The series is still very much up for grabs over the next three days but Woakes accepts he has not given the best account of himself.
“It was a good opportunity and I probably haven’t taken it as I’d have liked it,” he said.
“It’s been a tough tour from that point of view, we haven’t taken wickets with the new ball. It’s not through a lack of effort, I’ve constantly been trying to improve, it just hasn’t worked.
“Obviously I would have loved to have taken more wickets, but it hasn’t happened. To pick up three today was really nice, because I’ll always try to do a job for the team. It would be nice to be able to do that a little bit more often, but it just hasn’t happened.
“It would be nice to be five, six, seven miles-per-hour quicker, but the first two games were pretty flat and not nice to bowl on for anyone.”