James Anderson proved himself once again as he lifted England with a four-wicket burst on the first day of the first West Indies Test in Barbados.
While Stuart Broad found himself dropped, Anderson showed why his name remains inked on the team sheet in permanent marker with an inspired spell that turned a platform of 174 for three into 264 for eight.
After bowling with painstaking economy early on the country’s record wicket-taker seized the moment later in the evening session, seeing off the settled duo of Shai Hope and Roston Chase, bouncing out Shane Dowrich and finishing with a caught and bowled off captain Jason Holder.He finished the day with four for 33 and another memorable day in the Caribbean to his name.
Ben Stokes also deserved great credit, pounding some life into a gentle pitch to claim three wickets.
Shimron Hetmyer made a flamboyant and stroke-laden unbeaten 56.
Jos Buttler dropped Hetmyer on cover when he was on just three.
Curran’s spell with the new Dukes ball failed to impress, though, a stubborn lack of swing and a slow pitch combining to neuter his effectiveness. Anderson was on target at the other end but debutant John Campbell, presented with his cap by the great Sir Garfield Sobers in the morning, took a liking to Curran.
Campbell had dominated the opening stand with Kraigg Brathwaite, scoring 44 of the first 50 runs, but allowed his ambition to get the better of him when Moeen Ali came on.
West Indies were 240/4 before Anderson took three wickets with the second new ball and Stokes another to leave the hosts on 264/8 at stumps. Anderson and Stokes between them took 7/80 from 43.2 overs. Curran, Moeen, Rashid and Joe Root took 1/179 from 46 overs.
Five of West Indies’ top six reached 40, but four of them were dismissed before reaching 60. Hetmyer is 56 not out.
Anderson’s dismissal of Shai Hope in the evening session ended a 342-ball wicket drought going back to the first Test in Sri Lanka.
Anderson became the first England bowler to take 200 Test wickets away from home.
Stokes got in on the act before stumps, beating Kemar Roach for pace and removing any lingering thoughts of Broad.