West Indies v England: Mark Wood takes his chance – Jonathan Agnew

The spell that Mark Wood bowled for England on the second day of the 3rd Test against West Indies in St Lucia was exhilarating as well as vibrant.

In returning to the Test group as well as recording career-best numbers of 5-41, the Durham man not just helped the visitors bowl West Indies out for 154, but likewise revealed the impact real pace can have.

For so long, we have actually been crying out for England’s assault to discover some bite, some cutting edge, specifically far from house. Think about the last Charcoals tour, where they did not have speed as well as penetration.

On Sunday, Wood reached 94.6 miles per hour, the type of speed that we have not seen from an England bowler for a very long time. You probably have to go back to Darren Gough, Steve Harmison or Andrew Flintoff to locate an English bowler with the ability of such an intense spell.

Wood’s stop-start Test career

Year Tests Wickets Average Strike-rate
2015 8 25 34.40 61.0
2016 0 n/a n/a n/a
2017 2 1 197.00 336.0
2018 2 4 48.75 105.7
2019 1 5 8.20 10.0

That is the sporting side to this tale, but there is likewise a human element – the story of a man whose global career has been afflicted by injuries, who had not been also meant to be on this trip and must have questioned whether his chance would ever before come again.

Timber made his England debut practically 4 years back, but this is just his 13th Test. He had not played in the lengthiest type of the video game given that last May and also was just summoned to the Caribbean after an injury to Olly Stone.

Would certainly he have also been playing in this suit had England’s cause the very first two Tests been various?

International sport is about taking the possibilities that are presented to you, something Timber certainly did in St Lucia.

I in fact interviewed him a number of days before this suit as well as, throughout our discussion, he stated just how much he was intending to play. He knew what an opportunity it would certainly be.

He has needed to be patient, to do his responsibility as 12th guy as well as strive in the nets – he had not bowled any kind of overs in correct, competitive cricket given that appearing for the England Lions on 8 December.

For that reason, you can say that there was plenty stacked against Wood when he came on to bowl, yet he supplied a spell that had my brand-new broadcast associate Alastair Chef purring.

He looked great off a new, lengthened run-up. He had excellent rhythm as he hammered up to the crease and also supplied the ball with a graceful jump.

As Timber began to take gates, not only were his team-mates right behind him, yet the crowd were barking him on also. He is a prominent personality both in the dressing area and also in the stands.

Possibly it was because of that Stuart Broad, that had simply taken a wicket of his own, volunteered to find out of the assault so Wood had the possibility to declare his initial five-wicket haul versus the Windies’ last set. That was a wonderful touch.

When Wood required, splattering the stumps of Shannon Gabriel, he left the area with the sphere held high and also a beaming smile on his face.

Wanting to the future, Wood will possibly wish that the Ashes collection could begin following week. As it is, England will need to manage both assumptions and his physical fitness in between currently and also the very first Examination versus Australia in August.

Just because they have actually a discovered a truly quick bowler, it does not suggest he will prosper whenever he pulls on the t shirt.

They will certainly have been conscious of his previous injury issues, particularly as he could be included in the Globe Cup. It’s a fascinating stabilizing substitute train Trevor Bayliss – will Wood be a lot more efficient in the bid to win the World Mug for the very first time, or to reclaim the Charcoals?

Not just that, yet just how will Timber be ideal employed when England do obtain him on the park?

If you have a bowler of such pace, should he be taking the new round? Should he have a selection of ends? England plainly have a fast-bowling power structure in the form of James Anderson and Stuart Broad, so there might need to be some choices made there.

Whenever Wood bowls, Joe Origin will possibly have to be quite prudent in how much he is utilized. To me, he should not be overbowled, but rather made use of for high-impact spells of no more than 4 overs each time.

Yes, losing this series is a frustration for England, but the re-emergence of Wood could eventually prove to be a big incentive. That knows, maybe one of the much-maligned leading three can cement their position on Monday too.

It has actually been an amazing Examination, with England playing like a side who have an indicate verify. We have actually found out not to take anything for provided, however they really should win from here.

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