NORTH SOUND, Antigua, CMC – Shamarh Brooks struck a half-century but West Indies A’s batting collapsed on the opening day of the day/night third four-day “Test” against England Lions here Monday.
Opting for first knock, the hosts reached a comfortable position of 150 for three at one stage before losing their last seven wickets for 86 runs, to be dismissed for 236 in their first innings at the Vivian Richards Cricket Stadium.
The right-handed Brooks, without a score of note in three previous innings in the series, top-scored with 63 while John Campbell and Rahkeem Cornwall both chipped in with 33.
Test batsman Jermaine Blackwood scored 28 and all-rounder Raymon Reifer, 27, but Lions struck critical blows in the latter half of the innings to restrict the Caribbean side.
Twenty-one year-old fast bowler Saqib Mahmood (3-50) and left-arm spinner Jack Leach (3-58) finished with three wickets apiece while seamer Richard Gleason weighed in with two for 43.
At the close, Lions were 20 without loss, requiring a further 216 runs for first innings lead.
Aiming for a clean sweep after comfortably winning the first two “Tests” in Jamaica, Windies A lost the early wicket of captain Kieran Powell for 11 with the score on 29, when he was caught at the wicket off Gleeson in the afternoon’s sixth over.
However, Windies A then benefitted from two partnerships in regaining control of the innings. Campbell, who struck four fours in a 57-ball knock, added 46 for the second wicket with Blackwood who also counted four fours in a 62-ball stay at the crease.
Both perished within two runs of each other to leave Windies A on 77 for three but Brooks and Jahmar Hamilton (20) posted 73 for the fourth to again steady the innings.
All told, Brooks faced 130 deliveries and notched nine fours and when Hamilton and wicketkeeper Shane Dowrich (0) fell in quick succession, he paired with Reifer in 33-run, sixth wicket stand.