Woakes lifts Lions at Sabina
Jermaine Lannaman, Gleaner Writer
Jamaica will today need to bat with authority if they are to gain at least first-innings honours against England Lions in their top-of-the-table West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) Regional Four-day Tournament clash at Sabina Park.
The Lions, who won the toss and chose to bat, ended yesterday's first day on 340 for nine, thanks to an entertaining, unbeaten 104 from promising all-rounder Chris Woakes, and 62 from batting all-rounder Ben Stokes.
It is uncertain whether or not England will declare this morning, or if they will bat through their innings. However, one thing is for sure, with such a challenging total Jamaica's batting line-up, which includes in-form batsmen Marlon Samuels, Wavell Hinds and Brendan Nash, will need to bat very well if the team is to come out on top.
Top bowlers missing
Missing their four main front-line bowlers in Jerome Taylor, Andrew Richardson, David Bernard Jr and leg-spinner Odean Brown due to injuries, Jamaica were put on the back foot somewhat when they we asked to field.
However, they were off to a decent start when, with the score on nine, they captured their first wicket when opener Adam Lyth was caught at gully by Marlon Samuels off the bowling of left-arm pacer Sheldon Cotterell for three.
With both teams still assessing the conditions of what was a lively pitch, Jamaica then collected their second wicket with the score on 41 when part-time medium pacer Danza Hyatt, who was used as the team's first-change bowler, got one to cut back before shattering the stumps of opener James Adams, who made 11.
This brought to the crease Lions captain James Hildreth, who joined number-three Andrew Gayle. However, with the score still on 41, the latter was superbly run out by Nash, much to the delight of the Jamaicans.
The much-talked-about wicketkeeper-batsman Craig Kieswetter, who was a member of England's victorious ICC World Twenty20 team, then came to the wicket, and with his captain added 20 for the fourth wicket before he played down the wrong line and was bowled by a straight delivery from Bevon Brown with the score on 71, and Jamaica pushing to dismiss the visitors for a low total.
However, Stokes, Hildreth, who made 40, and Woakes, helped by bowling that at times lacked penetration, batted their team out of trouble.
The right-handed Woakes, who has so far represented England in three one-day internationals and two Twenty20 internationals, hit 12 fours and three sixes in his knock, which has so far lasted 118 balls, while Stokes, who was dropped on 17 by Brown in the deep off leg-spinner Akeem Dewar, slammed two sixes and eight fours during his vigil.
Cotterell, two for 74 off 16 overs, and Hyatt, two for 46 off 10, have so far taken most wickets for Jamaica.
Play resumes today at 10 a.m.
England Lions 1st Innings
A. Lyth c Samuels b Cotterrell 3J. Adams b Hyatt 11A. Gale run out (Nash) 17J. Hildreth cLambert b Dawes 40+C. Kieswetter b B. Brown 15J. Taylor lbw b Hyatt 41B. Stokes c Cotterrell bLambert 63C. Woakes not out 104J. Harris lbw b Dewar 22D. Briggs b Cotterrell 3N. Buck not out 1Extras (b4, lb4, w2, nb10) 20Total (9 wkts, 90 overs) 340
Fall of wickets: 1-9, 2-41, 3-41, 4-75, 5-103, 6-161, 7-232, 8-286, 9-303
Bowling: Dawes 17-4-40-1, Cotterrell 16-5-74-2, Hinds 11-1-34-0, Hyatt 10-0-46-2, B. Brown 13-1-59-1, Dewar 13-4-43-1,Lambert 10-0-36-1
Jamaica: S. Jackson, D. Hyatt, M. Samuels, B. Nash,T. Lambert, W. Hinds, A. Dewar, C. Walton, J. Dawes, S. Cotterell, B. Brown
Toss: England Lions
Umpires: V. Bullen, N. Malcolm