I'm bowled over by the game’s top thinkers
21:52 GMT, 27 May 2012
Everybody turned up on Sunday expecting England to bat all day and pile up 500, maybe even 600, on what is still the flattest of Trent Bridge pitches in perfect conditions.
Well, it didn't turn out that way. Neither side batted particularly badly but 14 wickets fell on the third day because of excellent, disciplined bowling by both England and West Indies and the thinking of two captains who really earned their corn.
This was a case of England batsmen being outthought and effectively bored out at times by West Indies as there was still precious little sideways movement before Andrew Strauss then posted sweepers to help keep control even when England were attacking so effectively with the new ball last night. I was very impressed by West Indies in the field.
Fiery: Kemar Roach bowled well for the tourists
They had a difficult day on Saturday but came back strongly when they could have wilted yesterday morning when faced with Strauss unbeaten on a hundred overnight and Kevin Pietersen in full flow.
Kemar Roach was fiery after his no-ball problems, Ravi Rampaul was a very good foil to him and Darren Sammy executed his plans perfectly, including frustrating Strauss into nicking a wide one.
Then when West Indies batted again after tea Jimmy Anderson was phenomenal with the new ball while Stuart Broad showed what an incredibly good thinker on the game he is.
Three and easy: Tim Bresnan took a flurry of late wickets for England
England have thought long and hard about how to dismiss Shiv Chanderpaul but no seamer had managed to do it in this series before Sunday when Broad and Strauss came up with a plan.
They must have sensed that Chanderpaul had decided to go for his shots and Broad had a long discussion with his captain before posting a leg gully and two other fielders on the leg side.
The world's No 1 ranked batsman must have thought that the ball was going to be full and straight, as opposed to Anderson's plan of attacking him outside off stump, but Broad double-bluffed him and sent down a bouncer.
Ball beats bat: Matt Prior's middle stump flies out of the ground
Chanderpaul was never totally in control of the resulting pull and hit it straight down Jonathan Trott's throat at long leg before Broad followed that up with a series of full balls to Marlon Samuels that, with his lack of footwork, he could easily have nicked. Clever bowling from a man with a fantastic cricket brain.
Tough day at the office: England's Jonny Bairstow struggled to deal with Kemar Roach's short pitch bowling
He and Anderson were brilliant with the new ball, but the man who made the difference was Tim Bresnan. The way he reversed the old ball at pace was magnificent – that extra zip off the pitch makes him a real addition to the side.
One of the day's talking points was the problems Jonny Bairstow had in coping with Roach but it is far too early to say that this lad definitely has a weakness against short pitched bowling.
After Lord's we were saying how organised Bairstow was but there were those yesterday at Trent Bridge almost writing him off, especially as Dale Steyn and Morne Morkel are on their way later this summer with South Africa.
The truth is somewhere in between. He will have to do some work with Graham Gooch because, after Sunday, every bowler will be queuing up to bowl short at Bairstow but let's not forget that Roach had a new ball in his hand and was bowling with a fast arm at a skiddy pace.
The lad knows he has arrived in Test cricket now and will have to work it out.