Onions makes West Indies batsmen cry
Recalled seam bowler plays a major role as tourists collapse in third test, reports Sapa-AFP at Edgbaston
GRAHAM Onions marked his England recall with two wickets as West Indies collapsed to 164/5 at tea on the third day of the third test yesterday.
The tourists, who had been a solid 85/1 at lunch, lost four wickets for 79 runs in the second session, with Durham paceman Onions's figures at an economical 2/32 in 18 overs. Fellow seamer Tim Bresnan weighed in with 2/44 in 16.
Marlon Samuels, who scored a century in England's nine-wicket second-test win at Trent Bridge, was 50 not out and Denesh Ramdin one not out.
History was against either side winning this match after the first two days had been washed out without a ball bowled.
Only twice before in test history had a team triumphed in such circumstances, with England beating New Zealand at Leeds in 1958 and New Zealand defeating Bangladesh at Hamilton in 2001.
It was no surprise when England captain Andrew Strauss opted to field first after winning the toss against a West Indies side whose top-order collapses had helped the hosts into an unassailable 2-0 lead in this three-test series.
Before this match England had left James Anderson out of their 12-man squad to rest the Lancashire seamer and, before play started on Saturday, they also omitted Stuart Broad.
Onions and Steven Finn were called up in place of the new-ball duo and, in overcast conditions, it was Onions, in his first test in more than two years, who nearly had an early breakthrough.
Adrian Barath had made just four when Onions took his outside edge only for Ian Bell at third slip to drop the straightforward chance.
Although he had looked the least threatening of England's three seamers, Bresnan took the first wicket when he had Kieran Powell caught by second slip Graeme Swann for 24 to leave the tourists 49/1.
Off-spinner Swann came on in a change to England's all right-arm pace attack but Barath responded by advancing down the pitch to loft him for a straight six.
Barath, 40 not out at lunch, had yet to add to that score when he was reprieved again by third slip Bell, who dropped an easy chance after Finn took the shoulder of the bat.
Fortunately for England, Barath had added just one when he was lbw to an understandably delighted Onions, his exit only temporarily delayed by an unsuccessful review, as a 106-ball innings came to an end.
And 90/2 soon became 99/3 when Finn caught and bowled Darren Bravo.
Assad Fudadin, who went more than half-an-hour without scoring, saw his promising innings end on 28 when he gloved a well-directed Bresnan bouncer and Bell, to the delight of his Warwickshire home crowd, at last held a catch.
Samuels then drove Bresnan through the covers before striking successive Swann deliveries for a six and a four to complete a 76-ball fifty.
But shortly before tea Narsingh Deonarine, in for the injured Shivnarine Chanderpaul, edged Onions to Strauss at first slip.