Fourth Test Match

West Indies v England

At Georgetown, March 22, 23, 24, 26, 27. Drawn. It was ironic that rain which washed out over thirteen hours -- including the whole of the fourth day -- should have made this match meaningless, for this was undoubtedly England's most impressive display of the series up to that point.

For the fourth time in four Tests England batted first, but the difference this time was that they compiled enough runs, 448, to put pressure on the West Indies. Again the inspiration came from Amiss and Greig, who each scored a century, although their task was made easier on a gently-paced pitch by the defensive selection of the West Indies side.

When Sobers surprisingly failed to report for the match, complaining that he was tired and needed a rest, Foster, a specialist batsman and second string bowler, was given his place. It meant that the side was so short of seam bowling that even though Boycott was again dismissed cheaply they were unable to maintain the pressure. As a result Lloyd's gentle medium pace and Foster's gentle off-spin were used in rotation.

Amiss, this time, batted five and a half hours until he was caught off the glove hooking at Boyce. Greig, with 121, was the last man out, bowled by the same bowler.

Such was the form of Amiss that his hundred had looked fairly inevitable, yet it was Greig's effort which stayed in the memory. His driving against bowlers using deep set defensive fields was powerful and unflawed.

The only fault with the whole of the England performance was that it was allowed to go on too long. The last half hour when the scoring rate had fallen away would have been better used bowling at the West Indies.

As it turned out the England bowling, too, was much more efficient. Arnold, who had made hardly any impression on the tour, bowled with fine control while Greig had gained such complete mastery of his slow-medium off breaks that he was the most dangerous bowler of all on a pitch which offered nothing to anybody.

Thus the West Indies batsmen, who had batted with such fury in the previous matches of the series were so restricted that Rowe, who had played festival cricket at Bridgetown, was held to 28 runs in two hours before he was dismissed.

Kallicharran, the most consistent of the West Indies' batsmen, was soon bowled and at the end of the third day they were 110 for two and under pressure for the first time in the series.

Yet they did not have to face another ball until mid-afternoon of the last day, by which time only formalities were left. Most of the interest centred round the efforts of Fredericks who had scored two hundreds for Guyana in the match against M.C.C. and now reached 98 when he was caught and bowled by Greig as he drove.

© John Wisden & Co