England, West Indies cricketers urged to ‘protest’ over ‘dead’ pitches


The first two Tests between West Indies and England ended in draws (Pictures: Getty)

David Lloyd says England and West Indies players could resort to ‘protesting’ over ‘dead’ pitches after the second Test in Barbados ended in a draw.

Windies captain Kraigg Brathwaite scored an 11-hour 160 in the first innings and survived 184 balls for 56 not out on the final day to frustrate England.

England declared on 507-9 in their first innings, with Joe Root making 153, Ben Stokes scoring his 11th Test hundred and Dan Lawrence hitting 91, but West Indies avoided the follow-on and batted for 188 overs themselves as Braithwaite and Jermaine Blackwood both reached three figures.

The tourists attempted to set up a final-day win but West Indies held on for a fairly comfortable draw as the series remained 0-0 heading into the final Test in Grenada.

Bat also dominated ball in the drawn opening Test in Antigua and former England coach Lloyd says the ‘dead’ pitches in the Caribbean have been ‘farcical’ and a blow to ‘broadcasters, players and supporters’.

‘Officials in Grenada should do right by the players and make the final Test a contest,’ Lloyd told the Daily Mail.

‘If not both sides should protest. Bowlers should bowl with the wrong hand and batters bat the wrong way around.

Kraigg Brathwaite batted for 673 balls in Barbados

Kraigg Brathwaite batted for 673 balls in Barbados (Picture: Getty)

‘The game would be in disrepute but that is how farcical this week has been.

‘I don’t know who presides over the preparation of these pitches but this is the second in recent weeks to have proved inadequate. 

‘Like this one, the Rawalpindi pitch for the opening Test between Pakistan and Australia was as dead as a door nail.

‘Who likes this sort of cricket? Broadcasters don’t, players don’t, supporters don’t. I’ve had half a dozen people contact me to tell me they’re not watching.’

Another draw for England means Root’s side have now won just one of their last 16 Tests, although they still have a chance of winning only their second series in the Caribbean in 54 years.

England’s bowlers toiled away but were frustrated by West Indies (Picture: Getty)

Head coach Chris Silverwood, batting coach Graham Thorpe and managing director Ashley Giles were all sacked following England’s Ashes drubbing over the winter.

After both teams shook hands in Barbados, Root said: ‘If we keep putting ourselves in these positions it won’t be long before we see ourselves winning a Test here.

‘I can’t ask any more of the group. They were brilliant again. The attitude was excellent.

‘Concentration and ability to take those chances with some tired bodies around was a great effort, so a lot of good signs again throughout the whole game, so a really pleasing week.

‘In terms of where we’ve been this winter and where we’re starting to see improvements, it is a really promising thing from us.’

Brathwaite added: ‘I am feeling quite good. I thought England obviously played well, batted well.

‘We put in a very big effort but we want a result in the last Test. We have to see what they produce [pitch in Grenada] but let’s hope it has something for the pacers.’

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