England vs West Indies: 'Top display of Test cricket', former players hail 'incredible' Windies win
West Indies beat England by four wickets in the first Test at Southampton to take a 1-0 lead in the three-match series.
Former England captain Michael Vaughan hailed West Indies’ “incredible” victory over England in the series opener and said their performance had been all the more remarkable given cricket was just returning from the COVID-19 shutdown.
West Indies, No 8 in the test rankings, arrived in England without batsmen Darren Bravo and Shimron Hetmyer and all-rounder Keemo Paul, who pulled out of the tour citing concerns about safety during the pandemic.
Few expected them to beat fourth-ranked England but Jason Holder’s team prevailed by four wickets in a see-saw contest.
A “great week of test cricket,” Vaughan said.
“For the West Indies to have come over to play is remarkable in these times... For them to have played so well & won is incredible,” tweeted Vaughan.
“I don’t even think England fans will be too disappointed...bloody love test cricket.”
Great week of Test Cricket ... For the West Indies to have come over to play is remarkable in these times ... For them to have played so well & won is incredible ... I don’t even think England fans will be too disppaointed ... bloody love Test cricket 👍
— Michael Vaughan (@MichaelVaughan) July 12, 2020
West Indies batting great Viv Richards was over the moon.
“First game after the break belongs to us,” tweeted the former captain.
“Some gritty performance from the lads. This team deserves the win in this game. Congratulations boys. You make us proud.”
First game after the break belongs to us!
Some gritty performance from the lads. This team deserves the win in this game. Congratulations boys
— Sir Vivian Richards (@ivivianrichards) July 12, 2020
Indian great Sachin Tendulkar praised the “good all-round” performance by both teams while captain Virat Kohli also hailed the “Top display of test cricket”.
Wow @windiescricket what a win. Top display of test cricket.
— Virat Kohli (@imVkohli) July 12, 2020
Good all-round performances by players from both teams.
Jermaine Blackwood played a crucial knock in a tense situation to see @windiescricket through. An important win which has set up the series perfectly. #ENGvWI pic.twitter.com/PLbJlqIe8c
— Sachin Tendulkar (@sachin_rt) July 12, 2020
“Cricket is so much better with @windiescricket doing well in the longest format of the game,” tweeted former India quick Irfan Pathan.
— Irfan Pathan (@IrfanPathan) July 12, 2020
The three-test ‘bio-secure’ series moves to Manchester for the second match from Thursday.
The two Tests will be played at the Daren Sammy Cricket Ground for the Sir Vivian Richards Trophy on 10-14 June and 18-22 June.
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Windies skipper Brathwaite, who was appointed in a full-time role in the five-day format earlier this year, spoke to reporters on the eve of the first Test against South Africa at St Lucia.
West Indies vs South Africa: Proteas pacers demolish Windies for crushing innings and 63-run win in first Test
The Caribbean side, trailing on first innings by 225 runs and resuming from an overnight position of 82 for four, were dismissed for 162.