25th over: West Indies 125-2 (Carty 11, Hope 9) Shai Hope is a classy batter – anyone who saw his Headingley heroics a few years ago knows that all too well. He’s a gun white ball player too and has FIFTEEN ODI hundreds and nigh on 5,000 ODI runs to his name. Livingstone goes too full and he is smeared back down the ground for four by Hope, the ball searing back past bowler and umpire like a tracer. We’re half way through the innings – West Indies need 201 runs from 25 overs.
24th over: West Indies 120-2 (Carty 11, Hope 4) Rehan drifts too far down leg looking for the raging turner but Carty pounces on it to release some of the pressure that has been building since the wickets, a powerful sweep brings him four.
23rd over: West Indies 114-2 (Carty 6, Hope 3) Another tidy over from Livingstone, England have Will Jacks up their spinning sleeve too. Carty has been becalmed so far, just six runs from his 22 deliveries.
22nd over: West Indies 112-2 (Carty 3, Hope 1) Rehan Ahmed sends down a beautiful over and the first maiden of the match. A big turning leggie beats Hope on the outside edge and nearly kisses the off stump in the process. Just nine runs off the last five overs.
21st over: West Indies 112-2 (Carty 3, Hope 1) Just three singles off it as England apply the squeeze. Livingstone rattles through a rapid over.
20th over: West Indies 109-2 (Carty 3, Hope 1) Shai Hope joins Carty in the middle as shadows lengthen across the Sir Viv outfield. Ahmed probes away, giving the ball plenty of fizz from his shoulder, the ball turning every delivery now. West Indies have been pegged back and England look to snuff out the new batters with spin.
One brings two and fellow opener Brandon King has to depart the middle. Livingstone went full and straight and slid it through the defences as King attempted to sweep. All of a sudden England have two wickets and the spinners look dangerous. There is turn out there, it isn’t quick turn but the ball is gripping on the surface.
19th over: West Indies 106-2 (Carty 1, Hope 0)
18th over: West Indies 104-1 (King 34, Carty 0) Keacy Carty is the new batter for West Indies. Rehan Ahmed has looked England’s best bowler and managed to slide one into Athanaze’s front pad and under the attempted sweep. It looked very adjacent and the batter wisely opted against a review.
Ahmed gets the much needed breakthrough and it is the in-form Athanaze who perishes to the googly!
17th over: West Indies 103-0 (Athanaze 66, King 33) West Indies bring the hundred up in the seventeenth – it’s been plain sailing for them so far as England have looked toothless in Antigua. Liam Livingstone is given the nod from Buttler but starts poorly, a spear down the leg-side is flicked fine for four and Athanaze gets out the broom and sweeps a length ball to the fence too.
16th over: West Indies 94-0 (Athanaze 62, King 28) Ahmed gets in and out of the over with just a couple off it.
15th over: West Indies 92-0 (Athanaze 61, King 27) Alick Athanaze goes to a lovely half century by slugging Brydon Carse away for three fours in the over! Well batted sir, a second ODI fifty for the southpaw opener and brought up in some style. A cut, a pull and a back-foot punch, all timed to perfection.
Casserole update – simmering away nicely. As it stands, England are being (not so slowly) cooked here in Antigua.
14th over: West Indies 79-0 (Athanaze 48, King 27) Ahmed into his second over and eight runs are taken off it. A googly is picked by King and swept hard to the boundary. This is an excellent opening stand from this pair, England look a bit lost in Antigua. I’m getting a depressingly familiar surge of those World Cup woes.
13th over: West Indies 71-0 (Athanaze 46, King 21) King has been subdued in comparison to his opening partner but he perks up by climbing into a short ball from Carse and depositing it well over the boundary rope for SIX. Dare I say it, England look flat again here under Buttler’s stewardship, West Indies are ticking over exceedingly comfortably.
12th over: West Indies 62-0 (Athanaze 45, King 14) Ahmed starts perkily, a LBW appeal is given not out but he finds some turn from the off. A couple of googlies follow and come out of the back of the hand nicely. Just three runs off the over but a first wicket still proving elusive for England.
11th over: West Indies 59-0 (Athanaze 43, King 13) Four fielders are now allowed to patrol the fence after the first PowerPlay comes to a close. The batters are happy to knock and run into the gaps and take four off the over from Carse. Righto, Rehan Ahmed is coming on to bowl his leggies, England need a breakthrough from their tyro spinner.
10th over: West Indies 55-0 (Athanaze 41, King 11) Alick Athanaze pockets ten runs off the over. Atkinson goes short and is top edged over the keeper for four but the batter gets all of the next one as he hooks another short delivery over the rope for SIX! He’s been a delight to watch so far in this innings and heads into the forties at a run a ball.
9th over: West Indies 45-0 (Athanaze 31, King 11) Brydon Carse replaces Sam Curran – whose opening spell of four overs was pinged for 30 runs with ease. Carse has a Steve Harmison style high-arm on point of delivery and is thundering in as the light begins to fade in Antigua. Just three off Carse’s first over.
8th over: West Indies 42-0 (Athanaze 31, King 9) A tighter over from Atkinson, just a single off it, Athanaze gliding down to third.
7th over: West Indies 41-0 (Athanaze 30, King 9) King slashes at a length ball and gets a meaty edge that flies through the vacant slip region for four. Ian Bishop does not like what he’s seen from England so far – “naughty bowling” he drawls on the TV commentary. ‘Naughty’ very much in the way my two year old can be (when she refuses to wear a coat, socks, shoes or sit in her car seat when we’re late for an appointment with Jolly Old St Nick) rather than the way, say, Danny Dyer might deploy the word (Nawwwty Plantagenets)
6th over: West Indies 37-0 (Athanaze 30, King 5) Short, wide and clobbered to the fence. Atkinson lets out a groan as his loose delivery is scorched through the off side by Athanaze. A poor start from England with the ball.
5th over: West Indies 33-0 (Athanaze 26, King 5) That is baaaad cricket from Sam Curran – he again serves up a floaty half volley on Athanaze’s pads and is again whipped away for a boundary. It’s been classy stuff from West Indies so far, Alick Athanaze in particular looks to have a touch of class, languid back swing and a gimlet eye being showcased by the 24 year old left-handed opener.
4th over: West Indies 26-0 (Athanaze 19, King 5) A quiet over with just a wide from Atkinson off it. King tried to smear a length ball back over the bowler’s head but connected only with balmy Antiguan air. It does look lovely out there, meanwhile in England, Ian Wright is currently wearing this coat:
3rd over: West Indies 25-0 (Athanaze 19, King 5) Another good over for the home side, Athanaze has taken an early liking to Sam Curran’s scudding full balls and bookends the over with boundaries – a flick fine and a back foot drive through point. Too easy.
2nd over: West Indies 17-0 (Athanaze 11, King 5) A buzz cut sporting Gus Atkinson shares the new ball, King gets off the mark with a drive into the off side and Athanaze glides behind point for another single. Lovely shot – Atkinson goes too full and is driven away handsomely by King through the covers for four.
1st over: West Indies 11-0 (Athanaze 10, King 0) Curran bustles in and pitches full in the hope of finding some early movement. The alliteratively monikered Alick Athanaze clips off his pads for two to open the Windies account. Curran beats the bat with a back of a length ball but commits the cardinal sin of overstepping to gift an early FREE HIT. Bosh – Athanaze pulls the short ball for SIX. Easy as that, West Indies cruising the chase.*
Please do get in touch if you are tuned in and have thoughts on the cricket or serving suggestions for casserole. You can drop me an email at [email protected]
* After the first over.
Alick Athanaze and Brandon King stroll out to the middle in shades of deep maroon, Sam Curran is going to start with the ball in sailor blue. Let’s play!
Thanks Tanya and hello everyone. I can feel the melatonin seeping through my screen as the sunshine beams in Antigua and inky gloom descends outside in South London.
A decent start to the Jos 2.0 regime – West Indies will have to bat very well to haul down what would be a record chase at the Sir Vivian Richards Stadium. Salt, Jacks, Crawley and Brook all looked in good nick, now it is over to the new look bowling attack. I’m looking forward to seeing how Brydon Carse and Rehan Ahmed perform in particular. More than my slow cooking (and smug) beef casserole in the oven? I’d say it is evens. Honest.
Aside from single figures for Jos Buttler, that was an encouraging display from New England. If not everything went right, the hitting was bold and there was no hint of that stench of desperation from the World Cup. A bish-bash-smash start from Salt and Jacks, careful class from Brook and Crawley and valuable smash n grab from Curran and Carse. Thanks for all your emails, as ever. Jim Wallace, fresh from a visit to Father Christmas, will take you through the second innings. Bye!
50th over: England 325 all out ( Carse 31) Twelve runs and two wickets from the final over. England’s tail retaining an admirable ability to come in and hit boundaries with no time to get their eye in. Rehan Ahmed belted Thomas for six before being caught, and Atkinson four from his first ball. England have the highest ODI score at this ground and it should, you’d think, be enough.
Goes for the max from the last ball of the innings, gets height but not much width and Chase runs in to collect.
Comedy fielding knock-out averted after Rehan Ahmed sends the ball into the stratosphere and Thomas and Hetmeyer nearly collide. Thomas holds sway, and Ahmed must go home.
49th over: England 313-8 ( Carse 31, Ahmed 4) Just six off Joseph’s final over, and Rehan Ahmed will be facing Thomas for the last over of the innings.
An email rolls in from a chilly London. “Stuck on a train going all around the houses to get to London only so I can leave again from the other side to my final destination, I tuned in to the Guardian and there’s more cricket! I had never thought it possible, having put England’s performance at the World Cup in the bin, and cricket aside for the year. Very many thanks – you’ve cheered me up no end. Hope it’s a good contest and both teams get a relatively stress-free workout.”
It certainly looks pretty blissful out there.
48th over: England 307-8 ( Carse 29, Ahmed 1) A valuable cameo by Curran comes to an end, with two overs left, and England fifty or so runs ahead of the average at this ground.
The most casual connection brings Curran six off Cariah’s first ball. But he’s beaten next delivery by the googly, and has to go the ball after, turning to watch the ball behind him as Carse thunders to the striker’s end. A calm Joseph throws to Cariah who whips off the bails at the non-striker’s end.
47th over: England 299-7 (Curran 32, Carse 28) Scurried singles but no boundaries as yellow-soled Shepherd thunders in. The sixth ball is given as a wide, Shepherd bends to the ground and roars in frustration. He has a point.
“Afternoon Tanya,” afternoon Brian Withington.
”Good test of my new varifocals switching rapidly between cricket on tablet and footy on TV. Hopefully they will soon be played in sufficiently to pass on to Jos …”
46th over: England 291-7 (Curran 26, Carse 27) Carse gets some bottom hand and the wind does the rest: six. Four for Curran with a checked drive and then Carse brings up the fifty partnership with a rasping four through mid-off. An extremely handy eighth-wicket partnership for England and a lavish 17 from Joseph’s ninth over.
“Break at the snooker, so I’ve double the audience.” taps Matt Winter. “Haven’t seen any of the Caribbean T20 but are they playing that on pitches like this? T5 would be more appropriate if so.”
45th over: England 274-7 (Curran 20, Carse 16) Curran scrubs his foot into the hard ground like a rabbit digging his scrape. Shades on, he then sends Thomas back down the ground for six. Carse swings and misses, trying to do the same, the ball just creeping past off stump. And then a hard chance, as Carse swings at Thomas but a leaping Hope can only get the top of his gloves to the ball.