Only Ben Stokes defied the conditions as wickets continued to tumble in the final Test between England and the West Indies as James Anderson became the sixth bowler to pass 500 Test wickets.
The West Indies emerged with a 22-run lead after a rain-affected day, which kept conditions ideal for the quick bowlers at Lord’s, but 60 from Stokes led the hosts to 194 all out and a first-innings lead of 71.
The tourists were bowled out in their second innings after reaching 177 at press time last night, leaving England 107 to win.
Nine wickets fell on Friday after 14 went down on the first day on Thursday and a result appeared inevitable in the series decider.
Anderson went to 500 in his second over of West Indies’ second innings when he bowled Kraigg Brathwaite with a ball that seamed back into the right-hander and clattered into middle stump.
It put Anderson alongside Muttiah Muralitharan, Shane Warne, Anil Kumble, Glenn McGrath and Courtney Walsh as the only bowlers to take 500 Test wickets.
Anderson is the first Englishman to reach the mark and just the third quick bowler.
“It’s a bit surreal,” said the 35-year-old, who has played for England for 14 years. “I can’t quite believe I’ve got this many wickets or played as much cricket as I have. I’m more relieved to get to get it out of the way, to be honest.”
Anderson followed up with an even better ball to remove Kieran Powell for 45, beating the opener to clip the bail off the off stump.
So far, only one batsman has come close to conquering the Lord’s pitch and the opposition fast bowlers.
Stokes followed up his 6-22 in the West Indies’ first innings to hit 60. That was easily the best performance with the bat in the match.
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