Stuart Broad came through an injury scare and Jonny Bairstow fell just short of a century against his own teammates as England’s Test warm-ups descended into a glorified training drill.
Events at Lord’s, where the decision was made to cull England and Wales Cricket Board managing director Paul Downton, seemed rather more relevant to the future of English cricket than the mix-and-match day at Warner Park, where four members of the touring party were parachuted in to bolster the local team.
Jonathan Trott (nought) and Gary Ballance (17) largely failed to do so, but Bairstow made 98 and Joe Root ended the day 87 not out in a score of 303 for nine.
It seemed entirely in keeping with the unsatisfactory nature of England’s Test preparation week that Bairstow, the only member of the seconded quarter not likely to feature in the series, had the most productive day.
At least Broad averted serious injury when he collapsed clutching his left ankle in the second over.
Broad initially looked in trouble when his boot slid through the crease and he tumbled to the ground, and coach Peter Moores was concerned enough to stride out to the middle to assess the damage.
But he spent just short of an hour off the field with an ice pack and later returned to the attack.
Broad was concerned enough about the run-ups to summon the groundstaff the ball before coming to grief.
He initially suggested bowling round the wicket in search of firmer footing but decided to go back to his original angle of attack after sawdust was applied.
When he went down the game was just ten balls old—the same number of deliveries that were possible in the infamous abandoned Test in Antigua six years ago.
By that stage, the first of England’s honorary Kittitians had already come and gone.
Trott opened the batting but lasted just three balls, guiding James Anderson straight to James Tredwell at third slip.
That was hardly the added steel England were looking for.
The same was largely true of Ballance, who seems short of his best after a troubled World Cup, and managed only 17 before an ill-judged cut against Tredwell ended up in Jos Buttler’s gloves.
The game lacked all semblance of competitive edge, even as Root compiled a trouble-free half-century of his own, but there were some possible pointers ahead the first Test in Antigua.
James Tredwell clearly outbowled Adil Rashid in the race for the spinner’s role and Chris Jordan failed to take a wicket despite seeing plenty of the ball.