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England Defeat West Indies In First Test At Lord's

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Alastair Cook and Ian Bell restored order in a century stand which guided England to a five-wicket win over West Indies in the first Investec Test.

The threat of Kemar Roach (three for 60) continued to sow doubts about the superiority of the world number one team on the final morning at Lord's.

But, after England had stumbled to 57 for four - in pursuit of 191 to go 1-0 up with two to play - Cook (79) and back-to-form Bell (63 not out) sealed victory by mid-afternoon.

Cook and Jonathan Trott had set out to calm home nerves in the morning session, but Trott got no further than the sixth over of the day. He edged his first delivery from Roach low through the slips for four; then Roach got the second to move off the pitch up the slope again, and resulted in a neat catch by Darren Sammy at second slip.

West Indies therefore got their wish - an early look at the dangerous Kevin Pietersen with the ball still new. Pietersen responded with a busy approach, and in under four overs he and Cook had gone past 50 from 29 for three, but the introduction of debutant fast bowler Shannon Gabriel brought a last transient twist in the tale.

Pietersen had clubbed a pull for four to midwicket from the third ball of Gabriel's first over. Once again, though, a boundary was instantly followed by a wicket as Pietersen aimed for a repeat to a ball which was slightly less short and took an under-edge for caught behind.

Despite the early setbacks, Cook regularly found the boundary with cuts and drives as England moved to within 60 runs of their target by lunch - thereby puncturing the tourists' belief that they could somehow sneak an unexpected win.

Cook completed a 78-ball fifty, in the last over of the session, with a back-cut off Marlon Samuels for his eighth four. Sammy's decision to persevere with Samuels' innocuous off-spin on the resumption was baffling, and did nothing to discomfort Cook or Bell - or provide much support for the returning Roach at the pavilion end.

Cook finally departed with just two more runs needed for victory, when he cut Sammy straight to gully.

The win was widely considered a formality before the start of the match but was ultimately achieved in unpredictable fashion. Only Stuart Broad's 11-wicket haul swung the verdict, as West Indies fought back with great determination on the third and fourth days.

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