England dismissed West Indies’ mainstay Shivnarine Chanderpaul, but Marlon Samuels and captain Darren Sammy saved West Indies the blushes on Day I of the second Test at Trent Bridge on Friday.
West Indies, who had collapsed to 63 for four when Samuels came in, were 304 for six at stumps.
Samuels was 107 not out -- only his third hundred in 39 Tests and first since his previous Test best of 105 against South Africa in Durban in January 2008.
Meanwhile, Sammy, whose place in the team has been called into question by West Indies great Michael Holding, was 88 not out at stumps having surpassed his previous Test best of 61 against Australia at Roseau last month and justified his decision to bat first after winning the toss.
The pair, who came together at 136 for six, had so far added an unbroken 168 for the seventh wicket.
Batman: Marlon Samuels pulls one on Day One of the second Test against England at Trent Bridge. PIC/Getty Images
Samuels walked out with West Indies in a desperate position and they were still in trouble at 136 for six when he was joined by Sammy. But, against an older ball and on a true pitch, the pair rebuilt the innings with sound and stylish shotmaking.
Chanderpaul, who batted for over 10 hours during England’s five-wicket win in the first Test at Lord’s that gave the world’s top-ranked Test side a 1-0 lead in this three-match series, was lbw for the second time in as many innings to Graeme Swann.
Left-hander Chanderpaul, playing back, had made 46 when Swann’s appeal was rejected by umpire Asad Rauf. But it was no surprise when England captain Andrew Strauss reviewed the decision. Replays showed the ball would have hit the stumps and Chanderpaul had to go after more than two hours at the crease featuring nine fours.
West Indies’ top order had failed repeatedly during a run of just two wins in 31 Tests coming into this game.
Yet such were the conditions, it would almost have been an admission of weakness had Sammy fielded first after winning the toss.
Nevertheless opener Adrian Barath, who battled hard for his runs at Lord’s, was out for nought when he he edged a rising ball from Stuart Broad and third slip James Anderson held a brilliant, left-handed, head-high catch.
New batsman Kirk Edwards then fell for seven when Anderson’s superb off-cutter beat his defensive shot.
Meanwhile, opener Kieran Powell, who got off the mark by cover-driving Broad for four, whipped Anderson and Tim Bresnan through mid-wicket.
Samuels was given out lbw for one off Bresnan but successfully reviewed Rauf’s decision.
At lunch, Anderson had taken two wickets for 22 runs in nine overs, having claimed 33 wickets in his five previous Tests at Trent Bridge. Broad, who took a Test-best seven for 72 at Lord’s, had figures of of two for 34 in 10 overs on his Nottinghamshire home ground.
West Indies, 84 for four at lunch, played out four straight maidens from Anderson and Broad early in the second session before Swann, like Broad on his home ground, struck to end a stand of 62 between Chanderpaul and Samuels after the pair had put on 157 in the second innings at Lord’s. And 125 for five soon became 136 for six when Denesh Ramdin was bowled by seamer Bresnan.