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After the mauling received in Edgbaston, West Indies have turned the tides emphatically in the three-Test series versus England by registering a memorable 5-wicket win in Leeds. In pursuit of 322, West Indies battled out Day Five with a spirited effort led by Kraigg Brathwaite (95) and Shai Hope’s unbeaten century (2nd overall). Remember, these two were the centurions from the first innings as well. The series is interestingly poised at 1-1 with all to play at Lord’s (3rd Test).

West Indies were 123 away from victory at tea. With 7 wickets in hand, everyone backed them. But visitors, in the past, have resorted to different ways of self destruction, and the wicket of Brawthwaite at the stroke of tea had given an opening to England. Nonetheless, Hope’s consecutive hundred and unmatched composure kept English bowlers at bay. He carried a serious face throughout the innings, melted the gaps and ensured to stay till the end. Roston Chase looked impressive in his 58-ball 30, but Chris Woakes led to his departure.

Jermaine Blackwood came at No. 6. He was given full license to attack and was up for the task. He assisted Hope and remained unbeaten on 118* to steer his side towards the total. Blackwood attacked Anderson, slamming him for a huge six, and looked in a hurry. He was, time and again, calmed down by Hope who was hell bent on taking his side home. Nonetheless, he departed for 41 in an attempt to hit the winning shot. Hope deservingly smashed the winning runs with 5 overs remaining in the day.

Earlier, England opted to bat on Day One. They managed 258 courtesy Ben Stokes’ century, but West Indies showed their intent with a much-better bowling performance led by four-fors from Shannon Gabriel and Kemar Roach. In reply, visitors were 35 for 3 but twin centuries from Brathwaite and Hope took them to 427 all-out; thereby leading by 169 runs. England battled their way to 490 for 8 decl. with 6 half-centuries and set a daunting target of 322 for West Indies.

Captains’ corner:

Joe Root: “Great Test match but not great to be part of a losing side. Shai Hope played exceptionally well – fifth day against high quality bowlers. It didn’t surprise me. We could have been a lot better (in the first innings). I am proud that we could afford to come back, declare and try for a win. It’s nice to look back in hindsight and see how things could have worked differently. But to be brutally honest, we weren’t good enough with the bat. Dropped catches has probably cost us but as I said, we fought extremely hard to get into that position. For a long time, the newbies have been behind the eight ball. I think the declaration was a positive thing, and we were in a position where we could do that. We have to learn and keep moving forward.”

Jason Holder: Yeah, thought we could win. Always believed in this group. We have done some outstanding things. In the team chats, I told the guys to believe. Nobody moved from the seats. It was a bit nerve-racking but Blackwood plays that way. Shai Hope was outstanding. He said he’s never scored a Test century but comes here and scores two. Must not forget Brathwaite. It’s about delivering on the big stage and what better than to come here in England and win. Windies have been through hard times in recent times. I want to thank everyone for the support. We will have to work on dropped catches and have to work on the consistency of our bowling. Special mention to our bowling coach; his mom passed away a few days ago.”

Man-of-the-Match says:

Shai Hope: Elated. We worked very hard as a team. I had no doubts. I made my way into Test cricket through First-Class cricket. We fought hard. I think we all know who Jermaine is. He’s one of those characters who gets the game going. Scored the runs and made it easy for me. Everytime you’re on the field, you’re trying to improve.”

Brief scores:

England 258 and 490 for 8 decl. (Mark Stoneman 52, Joe Root 72, Dawid Malan 61, Moeen Ali 84; Roston Chase 3 for 86, Jason Holder 2 for 95) lose to West Indies 427 and 322 for 5 (Kraigg Brathwaite 95, Shai Hope 118*; Moeen Ali 2 for 76, Stuart Broad 1 for 91) by 5 wickets.

Full Cricket Scorecard, England vs West Indies, 2nd Test, Headingley