England off to a solid start


England were 259 for three in reply to the West Indies’ first innings 243, a lead of 16 runs, when bad light ended the second day’s play in the first Test at Lord’s on Friday. England captain Andrew Strauss was 121 not out and Ian Bell five not out.
Earlier, England captain led his side to 80 for one at lunch on the second day of the first Test against the West Indies at Lord’s here on Friday. Opening batsman Strauss, who’d managed just one hundred in his 50 previous Test innings, was 31 not out on his Middlesex home ground with Jonathan Trott unbeaten on 17.
England were now 163 runs behind West Indies’ 243 after Stuart Broad needed just the opening ball of Friday’s play to end the tourists’ first innings. Alastair Cook (26) was the only England batsman out before lunch when, trying to cut a short and wide delivery from Kemar Roach, he got an inside edge on to his stumps.
Cook’s exit left England 47 for one. Fellow left-hander Strauss then square cut Roach for four in trademark style to bring up England’s fifty. An all seam attack featuring Test debutant Shannon Gabriel, in for the injured Ravi Rampaul, bowled steadily but Strauss and Trott held firm.
West Indies, who resumed on 243 for nine, saw No 11 Gabriel’s maiden Test innings end in a golden duck when he edged Broad to Graeme Swann at second slip.
As a result, Shivnarine Chanderpaul remained stranded on his overnight score of 87 not. The left-hander, officially, the world’s best Test batsman, was in for more than four hours and struck 12 boundaries.
But by staying in his favoured position of No 5, it meant that by the time he came in West Indies’ notoriously fallible top order had slumped to 46 for three. Fast-medium bowler Broad’s figures of seven for 72 were his best in Tests, surpassing his six for 46 against India at his Nottinghamshire home ground of Trent Bridge last year.