Windies’ hopes of inflicting a famous whitewash over England in the ongoing Test series has taken a huge blow as they will be without their captain, Jason Holder, for the third Test of the series. The ICC has suspended the Windies skipper for the upcoming game.
Holder was held responsible for his team’s slow over rate during the win in the second Test Antigua. The hosts wrapped up the three-match series with a second successive win, thrashing England by 10 wickets inside three games. Windies had won the first Test in Barbados by 381 runs within four days.
After bowling out England for just 132 in the first innings, Windies posted 306 in their innings, thus taking a big lead of 119. In reply, England slipped from 35-0 to 132 all out, with Kemar Roach and Jason Holder taking four wickets each in Antigua. With Windies chasing only 14, John Campbell wrapped up the famous victory with a six.
England had started the day on a good note, taking the final four Windies wickets for just 34 runs. The openers – Rory Burns and Joe Denly – then survived the four overs before lunch. However, the floodgates opened once Burns was sent back by Holder and the 35-run opening stand came to an end. 14 runs later, Holder cleaned up Jonny Bairstow to put Windies well in command.
Alzarri Joseph (2-12), playing despite his mother passing away overnight, then removed Joe Root (7), given out caught behind after a review, and Denly (17), who lost his off stump after shouldering arms. England kept on losing wickets at regular intervals and were eventually all out for 132. Jos Buttler was the only batsman to cross the 20-run mark, scoring 24.
The series win is Windies’ first triumph over a major Test-playing nation, home or away, since they beat New Zealand in 2012 and also the first over England since 2009.
In Holder’s absence, vice-captain Kraigg Brathwaite is likely to lead the team. Missing Holder will be a big blow for the hosts.
The allrounder has starred against England in the series so far, hitting an unbeaten 202 in the first Test before taking four wickets in the second innings of the second Test.