Jamie Smith enjoys dream debut as England dominate West Indies

Jamie Smith enjoys dream debut as England dominate West Indies

Jamie Smith became the second debutant in as many days to leave his mark on England's revamped Test side, hitting a sparkling 70 against an outclassed West Indies at Lord's.

After fellow newcomer Gus Atkinson claimed seven wickets in the first innings, Smith introduced himself in style as the hosts hurried into a match-winning position after just two days of cricket.

The 23-year-old, who leapfrogged 100-cap veteran Jonny Bairstow and Surrey team-mate Ben Foakes to get the nod in a new-look XI, hit eight fours and two powerful sixes in an eye-catching cameo that justified the selection panel's leap of faith.

His punchy effort at number seven lifted England to 371 all out, a domineering lead of 250 and the perfect platform to apply serious pressure with the ball.

The tourists bucked badly in response, crumbling to 79 for six to make an innings defeat on Friday a virtual certainty.

The retiring James Anderson struck first, bowling visiting captain Kraigg Brathwaite with a classic bail trimmer between bat and pad to electrify a crowd that had come to say goodbye.

Ben Stokes then took his turn in the spotlight, becoming just the third all-rounder in history to reach the double milestone of 200 Test wickets and 6,000 Test runs, following Caribbean great Sir Garfield Sobers and South Africa star Jacques Kallis.

But amid the festivities, which took place alongside the fundraising efforts of the Ruth Strauss Foundation, there was a morose feeling that this may be a West Indies outfit unable to take their part in a fair fight.

They offered glimmers of their character, Gudakesh Motie bowling Stokes with a ball that spun viciously out of the rough and Mikyle Louis producing a sensational piece of fielding to run out Shoaib Bashir, but as a unit they fell well short of the required standard.

James Anderson delighted the Lord’s crowd with a classic bail trimmer (Action Images via Reuters)
James Anderson delighted the Lord’s crowd with a classic bail trimmer (Action Images via Reuters)

England began the day on 189 for three, already 68 ahead and moved the game forward at speed. There were 42 runs in the first half-hour, Joe Root hitting four fours in nine deliveries and Harry Brook dumping Shamar Joseph for six over midwicket.

Brook (50) skied a top-edge looking for more of the same off Alzarri Joseph before Motie bowled the ball of the match, ragging one out of the footmarks to floor Stokes' middle stump.

The left-armer followed up by bowling Root for 68 past the outside edge but the England lead was already spiralling.

Smith made the most of his first chance to impress, scoring 12 of his first 16 runs in boundaries before showing off a well-honed technique in a sensible stand of 52 with Chris Woakes.

He moved quickly through the gears when joined by the tail, passing a test Foakes has previously stumbled over, scoring his last 28 runs off 30 balls and blazing Jayden Seales out of the ground with one brutal pull.

The only foot he really put wrong was getting out before Anderson faced a single ball in his final Test innings.

The 41-year-old is always happier with a ball in his hand, though, and he was soon doing what he has done best for the last 22 years.

After four overs of nagging away at the openers, he hit the jackpot by bringing one back down the slope and through a crack between Brathwaite's bat and pad. The bails hopped from their perch and Anderson pressed his finger in the air as the stands rose in acclaim.

He took his cap at the end of his over - a wicket maiden, naturally - having conceded off just one of the 30 deliveries in his spell. He was back more before stumps, taking wicket number 703 when Alick Athanaze fenced one through to Smith.

Stokes took his own tally to 200 when he pitched one up at pinned Kirk McKenzie lbw.

Stokes had Louis caught behind next, further evidence that surgery and rehab have restored his previous powers with the ball, before Atkinson snapped up Kavem Hodge and Jason Holder to take his match haul to nine.

Holder gave way in the last over of the day, fending to short leg in a final act of surrender.