TEST: Anderson bowls England to series win over Windies
James Anderson took a career-best 7-42 to lead England to a series-clinching nine-wicket victory over West Indies in the third and deciding Test at Lord’s.
Anderson, who took his 500th Test wicket on Friday, claimed five more on day three as West Indies were bowled out for 177, despite 62 from Shai Hope.
Set 107, England were taken to their target by an unbroken stand of 72 between Mark Stoneman and Tom Westley. The 2-1 series win follows a 3-1 success against South Africa.
Not only does it extend an unbeaten home record against West Indies that dates back to 1988, but also sends England off on their defence of the Ashes on the back of two Test series wins in Joe Root’s first summer as captain.
England play one Twenty20 and five one-day internationals against the Windies to conclude the home summer before travelling to Australia in October.
When England hammered a woeful West Indies in the day-night Test at Edgbaston, the series looked likely to be neither a spectacle nor decent preparation for a trip down under.
However, a wonderful display by the tourists in the second Test at Headingley not only restored some faith in the Caribbean side as a Test force, but also set up the pressure situation of a series decider at Lord’s.
In the end, the low-scoring affair in bowler-friendly conditions has seen England prove themselves as the superior team, even if the scarcity of runs has done little to help the hosts further their search for top-order batsmen.
Opener Stoneman and number five Dawid Malan have probably done enough to ensure their places in an Ashes squad that is due to be announced when the domestic season finishes at the end of September.
The place of number three Westley is less certain, with the likes of Haseeb Hameed, Keaton Jennings and Alex Hales looking for runs in the final weeks of the County Championship in order to press their claims. (BBC Sport)