England captain Joe Root backs positive declaration despite Headingley defeat

Relieved Hope happy to help Windies dominate
Brathwaite, Hope's hundreds resurrect West Indies

30 August, 2017

Kraigg Brathwaite narrowly missed out on the distinction, being out for 95 in the second innings after having hit 134 in the first, though he and Hope shared a crucial 144-run stand for the third wicket that put the visiting side on track for the eventual win.

"We re Test cricketers for a reason, we have the fight, belief and players to do it".

Even though Blackwood was stumped by Jonny Bairstow off the bowling of Moeen, Hope hit the winning runs the very next over and finished unbeaten on 118 off 211 deliveries, which included 14 boundaries.

They resumed on five without loss after England captain Joe Root had declared late on Monday with England 490 for eight in their second innings.

Chris Woakes was set on 61 not out in that second innings, although James Anderson was the only man to come in and perhaps worth keeping fresh to bowl, while declaring decreased the chance of West Indies batting for a draw.

When Ali came to the crease, England had just lost three wickets in six overs to offspinner Roston Chase and was 327-7 and just 158 runs ahead.

In a sign of things to come on a wearing pitch, and illustrating the final-day challenge facing the West Indies, Ali bowled one over of spin at the very end of the day and immediately looked risky. Opener Kraigg Brathwaite is, however, looking settled now.

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The declaration might not have been timed right but I thought it was a positive thing to do, we're a side that want to go out there and win Test matches.

Dropped catches were a constant feature throughout the Test and while the Windies were widely pilloried for failing to take their chances, England were just as culpable at times and Alastair Cook grassing Brathwaite on four had a decisive impact.

England's plight was summed up when Cook dropped Shai Hope on 106.

"It was nerve-wracking with Jermaine Blackwood, a lot of credit must go to him with how well he played and not changing his style of play".

Under heavy criticism following a heavy innings defeat inside three days last weekend, the Caribbean side responded strongly by piling up 329 for five in their first innings at the close - a lead of 71 heading into day three today. "(He's got) plenty of courage, plenty of character and plenty of determination".

"At no point were we complacent in the game - I'm really proud of the effort we showed to get in a position to win, but unfortunately it wasn't to be".

"He's been going through the form dip but he's looked in good nick".

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