by Philip Hackett
RUNS, RUNS, RUNS.
Batsmen continued to enjoy conditions yesterday with a further 320 runs being scored for the loss of just four wickets as England replied strongly to Barbados' run feast.
England closed the second day of the three-day match on 178 for two after Barbados had extended their first innings to 472 for six declared.
Overnight pair Roland Holder and Ricky Hoyte continued to play comfortably, although Hoyte took 24 minutes to add to his overnight score.
He broke the drought with a classy cover drive for four off medium-pacer Ashley Cowan.
The pair raised the century stand in 144 minutes and brought up the Barbados 400 after 487 minutes. Prior to that Holder had reached 150 for the second time in as many innings against the tourists.
He seemed intent on going on to the double-century he missed out on in Jamaica, when he was judged by umpire Dalton Holder to be out of his ground following a direct hit from backward point by Chris Silverwood as he and Hoyte went through for a single.
Holder batted for 362 minutes for his 158, facing 238 deliveries and hitting 24 fours.
Hoyte reached his 50 just before the interval in 213 minutes from 167 deliveries, counting five fours in his 27 scoring strokes.
The fifth-wicket partnership between Holder and Hoyte yielded 144 in 208 minutes and Barbados went to lunch at 404 for five amidst wide speculation about the timing of the expected declaration.
It took just over an hour after lunch for the question to be answered but not before Terry Rollock and Ottis Gibson enjoyed themselves and entertained the crowd in a breezy 45-run stand.
They came together after Hoyte had driven a delivery from Andy Caddick to Cowan at mid-off. Hoyte made 64 in 246 minutes during which time he faced 189 balls and struck eight fours.
In 64 minutes after lunch Barbados added 68 before the declaration was made. Rollock's unbeaten 28 came from only 41 deliveries and included one six and two fours.
Gibson clouted two sixes and two fours off 17 balls in reaching 24 not out.
The second six was a massive hit off Croft which was still rising as it cleared the Hall and Griffith Stand on its way out of the ground. Earlier in the same over Rollock had hit Croft for a six over straight mid-wicket.
England raced to 53 without loss in nine overs before tea, mainly on the strength of Alec Stewart's aggression.
He started with a flurry of boundaries, mainly off left-arm pacer Pedro Collins who had to be replaced after conceding 22 runs in his first two overs.
Stewart raced to 50 in 75 minutes off 48 balls with 11 fours as England's 100 came four minutes later off 16 overs and one ball.
The dismissal of Stewart, well caught by Holder at second slip off Collins for 52, broke the momentum and England adopted a more cautious approach until the close.
Collins, who conceded 36 from his first three overs, redeemed himself by conceding 14 from his next seven along with the wicket of Stewart.
Left-arm spinner Winston Reid bowled well before being forced to leave the field after damaging his finger attempting to take a return catch from Butcher who was dismissed by leg-spinner Rollock for 79 shortly before the close.
Day 3: Leg-Spinner Takes Honours Against England
by Philip Hackett
A four-wicket haul by leg-spinner Terry Rollock helped to give Barbados the satisfaction of taking first innings lead over England as the three-day first-class match ended in a draw at Kensington Oval yesterday.
England, relying to Barbados' first innings 472 for six declared, were bowled out for 382 shortly after tea.
Barbados scored 51 for one before the match was called off around 4:35 p.m.
Rollock removed Mark Ramprakash, Jack Russell and Robert Croft to add to the wicket of opener Mark Butcher which he claimed on Sunday to finish with four for 56 from 23.1 overs.
Veteran left-arm spinner Winston Reid, Rollock's spin partner at Division 1 club YMPC, also bowled impressively for returns of three for 86.
On a pitch which remained friendly to batsmen, it was testimony to the commitment of the Barbados team that they were able to dislodge England's last eight batsmen for 204 after they had resumed on 178 for two.
Nasser Hussain, Graham Thorpe, Ramprakash and Adam Hollioake all had good starts but only Thorpe converted his to a half-century.
Thorpe started the day on three in partnership with Hussain on 24. The pair had added exactly 50 to extend the third-wicket stand to 60 when Hussain, clearly intent on accelerating the scoring, drove a catch to Adrian Griffith at cover to give pacer Marlon Blagrove his first first-class wicket. Hussain made 45.
Thorpe and Ramprakash posted another 60 before wicket-keeper Ricky Hoyte pouched a legside catch to dismiss Thorpe off the bowling of Ottis Gibson. Thorpe's 59 included six fours and came in 154 minutes from 126 balls.
Hollioake, 45, and Ramprakash, 44, took the chance to get batting practice but the lower order failed to offer much resistance as the last five wickets tumbled for 31 runs.