Will The West Indies Complete Series Whitewash?

Will the Windies complete a whitewash?

The West Indies closed out their series win over England in the second Test at Antigua, signalling their dominance by claiming a 10-wicket triumph.

England were on the back foot from the start after losing the toss. Once again their batsmen failed in the middle, mustering only 187 in their first innings. Sixty of those runs came off the bat of Moeen Ali as he attempted to salvage a decent score for his team late on day one.

The home side did not have the same problems as the Three Lions. A resilient half-century from Darren Bravo was the anchor of their reply. Kraigg Brathwaite, John Campbell and Shai Hope all made knocks in the forties to take the Windies over the 300-run mark.

The tourists wilted under pressure as Kemar Roach and Jason Holder ripped through their batting line-up. England were skittled out for 132 without providing a semblance of resistance, allowing the West Indies to knock off the 14 runs required to clinch the series with ease.

Joe Root is under pressure after the defeat, while coach Trevor Bayliss is also coming under scrutiny for his team’s performances with the bat. The Windies will be aiming to capitalise once again to complete a whitewash victory.

Will the Windies complete a whitewash?

West Indies’ Top Batsman

The form of the West Indies’ batsmen at the top of the innings has been the difference between the two sides in the series. Brathwaite, Campbell and Hope have been able to dig out performances to make the England bowlers work hard for their wickets. They’ve played very few loose shots and have taken pride in their discipline at the crease. In the modern-day game, it has been pleasing on the eye to see West Indies batsmen rein in their attacking instincts.

Brathwaite has been impressive and may have set the tone in the opening Test with his innings of 40. The 26-year-old has battled James Anderson with the new ball and has not subjected the middle order to the veteran seamer. Brathwaite takes over the captaincy from the suspended Jason Holder for the contest. He will be determined to keep the Windies’ winning run going in his solitary outing in the leadership role. Back him to lead from the front by top scoring in the first innings at odds of +400   with Bet365.

England’s Top Batsman

England’s batting in the series has been nothing short of atrocious. They took a major step forward in Sri Lanka against spin when they won the series 3-0. However, their performance against pace bowling and seaming deliveries has been embarrassing. The visitors have lacked the discipline that the West Indies have displayed at the crease. On too many occasions, batsmen have seemingly been set in the middle, only to play a loose shot a wide ball.

The West Indies have bowled, especially Kemar Roach, but it has hardly been the onslaught England’s predecessors of the 1970s and 80s would have felt. Almost every player in the line-up will feel under pressure to perform. Rory Burns in under the spotlight, while Joe Denly’s debut at opener did not go to plan. Bairstow scored a half-century in Antigua and has looked in decent touch in the middle. He may be England’s best hope of scoring meaningful runs in St Lucia. Back him at odds of +400   with Betway to lead the way in the first innings.

West Indies’ Top Bowler

Without Holder, the West Indies will be without one of their main strike bowlers. The quartet of pacemen have kept the pressure on the Three Lions throughout the tour in a similar way Australia have had success in the past. There has not been a weak link and the replacement for Holder will have to rise to the occasion. Roach has been the architect of England’s downfall at the top of the innings. He has been outstanding with his pace and movement, intimidating the batsmen with bounces before drawing them into loose strokes.

The 30-year-old has taken 17 wickets thus far at an average of 12.07, highlighting his dominance with ball in hand. Roach will have to take on more responsibility in lieu of Holder’s absence. He has an impressive record at St Lucia, taking 12 wickets in his two matches at the venue, including a five-wicket haul against Bangladesh in 2014. Roach was on song against Sri Lanka in his last appearance there so back him to lead the wicket column in the first innings at odds of +275   with 888Sport.

England’s Top Bowler

England’s bowlers have toiled in the heat, but have not shied away from their task. They’ve managed to keep their side in both matches despite the abject performances of their batsmen. Anderson has remained consistent, while Broad found his form on his return to the side after being left out of the opener. Sam Curran has failed to thrive in difficult conditions for bowlers of his ilk. He doesn’t have the pace of Broad or the guile of Anderson at this stage of his career.

Curran could make way for Mark Wood or Chris Woakes for the final match of the series. Ben Stokes has performed well with the ball in his hand, taking six wickets in the first Test before notching another two wickets in Antigua. He has the attributes for success in the West Indies and St Lucia. Back him to lead the wicket column in the final Test for the Three Lions at odds of +500   with Bet365.

Winner

The West Indies have been imperious in the series to date and will not be willing to take their foot off the gas. England have been vulnerable with the bat and there should be no magic formula that will prevent them from collapsing again in St Lucia. Even without Holder, the home side should be able to close out a whitewash triumph at odds of +175   with Bet365.

Tips Summary

West Indies To Beat England 3rd Test
Saturday 9th February 2019 – Wednesday 13th February 2019
Odds: +175

Kraigg Brathwaite To Be West Indies’ Top Batsman
Saturday 9th February 2019 – Wednesday 13th February 2019
Odds: +400

Kemar Roach To Be West Indies’ Top Bowler
Saturday 9th February 2019 – Wednesday 13th February 2019
Odds: +275

Jonny Bairstow To Be England’s Top Batsman
Saturday 9th February 2019 – Wednesday 13th February 2019
Odds: +400

Ben Stokes To Be England’s Top Bowler
Saturday 9th February 2019 – Wednesday 13th February 2019
Odds: +500

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