England are in a spot of bother at the end of penultimate day in Southampton. After openers Rory Burns and Dom Sibley gave England a head start, Joe Denly chipped in with an important cameo. Before Zak Crawley played the best Test knock of his career and captain Ben Stokes further strengthened the cause with his contribution.
It looked like the Englishmen were looking to make the most of the second innings and to their credit they did so to some extent.
Until a good old English collapse followed. England have now exposed the chink in armouries (batting and bowling).
If leaving out Stuart Broad was a mistake as far as the bowling is concerned, picking up wicket keeper-batsman Jos Buttler ahead of Jonny Bairstow was a failed gamble.
Now consider this: England have a certain Stokes in their line-up. He is known for his flamboyance and aggressive batting approach which has seen him taking on the bowlers. Composure is not his forte and the same holds true for Buttler.
On the penultimate day, the English lower order - Ollie Pope, Buttler and Dom Bess - fell like a pack of cards. This is where Bairstow could have come in handy.
Bairstow is known for providing a solid cushion to the side lower down the order and could have saved the home team from a certain collapse. He can defend the ball when required and in circumstances like these could have shown composure to push the Windies bowlers on the backfoot.
But come on Sunday, you will find England feeling on 248/8 with a 170 runs lead, facing a high on optimism West Indies side.
The visitors will fancy to finish off the English collapse in the first half an hour of the play to chase anything close to 200 runs on the final day.
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