AGENCE FRANCE PRESSE
BIRMINGHAM: Graham Onions marked his England recall with two wickets as West Indies collapsed to 164-5 at tea on the third day of the third Test at Edgbaston here today.
The tourists, who had been a solid 85-1, lost four wickets for 79 runs in the second session, with Durham paceman Onions’s figures now standing at an economical 2-32 in 18 overs. Fellow seamer Tim Bresnan weighed in with 2-44. Marlon Samuels, who scored a century in England’s nine-wicket second Test win at Trent Bridge, was 50 not out and Denesh Ramdin one not out.
History was against either side winning this match after the first two days had been washed out without a ball bowled. Only twice before in Test history had a team triumphed in such circumstances, with England beating New Zealand at Leeds in 1958 and New Zealand defeating Bangladesh at Hamilton in 2001. Adrian Barath had made just four when Onions took his outside edge only for Ian Bell, fielding in the third slip position often occupied by Anderson, to drop the straightforward chance.
Although he had looked the least threatening of England’s three seamers, it was Bresnan who took the first wicket when he had Kieran Powell caught by second slip Graeme Swann for 24 to leave the tourists 49-1.
Barath, 40 not out at lunch, had yet to add to his interval score when he was reprieved again by third slip Bell, who dropped an easy chance after Finn took the shoulder of the bat. Fortunately for England, Barath had added just one run when he was lbw to an understandably delighted Onions, his exit only temporarily delayed by an unsuccessful review, as a 106-ball innings, featuring a six and four fours, came to an end.
And 90-2 soon became 99-3 when Finn caught and bowled Darren Bravo after the batsman checked a drive. Fudadin saw his promising innings end on 28 when he gloved a well-directed Bresnan bouncer and Bell. Samuels then drove Bresnan through the covers before striking successive Swann deliveries for a six and a four to complete a 76-ball fifty. But shortly before tea Narsingh Deonarine, in for the injured Shivnarine Chanderpaul, edged Onions to Strauss at first slip.