ENG vs WI: WATCH – Shannon Gabriel becomes the first bowler to claim a wicket amid return of international cricket

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ENG vs WI: WATCH – Shannon Gabriel becomes the first bowler to claim a wicket amid return of international cricket
Shannon Gabriel (Screengrab: @Skycricket)

The international cricket has returned in the form of a Test match as England and West Indies have kicked-off the three-match series at the Ageas Bowl in Southampton on Wednesday (July 08).

After the delay in the toss of the first Test, since the coronavirus outbreak hit the world, England’s stand-in captain Ben Strokes opted to bat first.

English openers Rory Burns and Dom Sibley walked into the ground followed by the Caribbean side. Pacer Kemar Roach bowled the first over and it was a maiden. However, in the second over of England’s innings, West Indies’ speedster Shannon Gabriel bowled a beauty to dismiss right-hander Sibley.

Gabriel set-up Sibley with out-swingers followed by a lethal in-swinger and eventually it knocked the top of off-stump. Sibley tried to leave the ball anticipating that it would go out, but it came in and clipped his bails.

Here’s the video:

Stuart Broad misses a Test on home soil after eight years

When England’s playing XI was out, it surprised everyone as a big name was missing. It was none other than that of paceman Stuart Broad.

It was the first occasion in the last eight years that Broad had been left out of England’s Test XI in a home game.

The Nottingham-born fast bowler had a streak of 51 consecutive games which ended against West Indies in the first Test. Incidentally, the last time Broad missed a Test at home also came against West Indies in 2012 at Edgbaston but then he was rested with the series already won.

Mark Wood replaced Broad in the game, and English skipper explained the reason behind Broad’s exclusion from the playing XI. Stokes said that Wood adds the extra dimension in the squad along with Jofra Archer. Stokes also revealed that Broad has wished him well on the big day.

“We feel that we can have an extra dimension with the pace of Wood and Archer. To be fair, he (Broad) wished me very well on my big day. Very proud, but my main focus is to get the win. Three lions on the chest, walking out to play for your country, no bigger motivation,” said Stokes.

Broad has so far played 138 Tests for England and taken as many as 485 wickets with 8/15 being his best. The veteran bowler is the fourth seamer and second English cricketer to grab that many scalps in Test career. Overall, he sits at the seventh place amongst leading wicket-takers in the longest format.

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