Jason Holder made sure he no longer remains the most under-rated Test cricketer with his excellent spell on Day 2 of the Southampton Test on Thursday.
In a dry condition underneath and clouds overhead Holder, with his natural bounce, hit the right areas and reaped benefits out of it to leave the Englishmen in tatters.
Ahead of the first Test, Holder said that he has not earned as much as credit as his counter-part Ben Stokes has rightly earned for his prowess in the longest format. The top ranked all-rounder also said that he does not personally likes the rankings too much. But on Thursday, Holder proved why he deserves to sit on the summit spot as all-rounder in Test cricket, 66 points ahead of the flamboyant Stokes.
For a ball to reverse swing, saliva is essential, but not just Holder but the West Indies bowlers looked unfazed with the 'temporary' rule at place in a COVID-19 world. Holder's body language told his story.
The tall medium-pacer picked up the right spots, hit the deck hard and often angled in the deliveries to make the most of his bowling effort. With all eyes on the first series - England vs West Indies - after the 117 days hiatus, fast bowlers including the likes of Jasprit Bumrah might take a cue from his efficient bowling.
It was speculated that Test cricket could turn into a batsman-dominated game without the use of natural substance. But Holder and his men gave early lesson in world cricket as they bundled out the home side to 204 runs.
Much to the credit to the length Holder and Shannon Gabriel chose in testing times, the England batsmen fell like a pack of cards, as the visitors dominated the day.
On the contrary, what makes the spell from Gabriel and Holder all the more special is the fact that the England bowlers - veteran James Anderson, Mark Wood and Jofra Archer - failed to replicate similar intensity.
The bowling brilliance from the West Indies not only acts as a lesson for fast bowlers across the globe but also puts Holder on the edge to become the first captain to win a Test series in England since Sir Viv Richards in 1988.