Rain holds up England after Cook's 243

Rain holds up England after Cook's 243

Rain holds up England after Cook's 243

Cook shared a 248-run third-wicket stand with new skipper Joe Root on Thursday and played with typical poise and judgement to turn an overnight 153 into 243.

Cook brought up his fifty shortly before lunch and Root soon followed him to the milestone, posting a half-century for the 11th test in a row to equal the record in five-day cricket.

Earlier, Yorkshireman Root, who succeeded Cook as skipper, hit 136 as the West Indies attack received a torrid time from the home side's top order. Former captain Alastair Cook was closing in on a century of his own at 85 not out.

Former England captain Alastair Cook recorded the fourth double century of his Test career and James Anderson struck an early blow to the West Indies' faint hopes of a recovery before inclement weather brought a premature end to day two of the inaugural day-night Test match held on United Kingdom soil.

It was also the highest third-wicket partnership in a Test match at Edgbaston, surpassing the 227 runs amassed by England's Alec Stewart and Robin Smith against Pakistan in June 1992.

England ended day one on 348/3 and will continue batting on Friday at 14:00 local time or 13:00 GMT. However, West Indies had a short stint of joy as they quickly removed the English middle-order after the wicket of Malan before the end of first session.

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But by that stage both Cook and Anderson, England's leading Test run-scorer and wicket-taker respectively, had made telling contributions. But he lost new partner Ben Stokes early in the second session when England's vice-captain, looking to move things along, was caught reverse sweeping to Chase on 10.

England had therefore faltered relatively with the loss of five wickets for 65 from 449 for three and found themselves bowling slightly ahead of schedule - albeit under increasingly cloudy skies, with rain already threatening. Next to depart was Jonny Bairstow. Jason Holder's delivery got the inside edge off his bat to hit the stumps.

If Cook's methods were once again a case of substance counting more than style, there was much to admire from his more aesthetic fellow left-hander who unfurled a succession of cover-driven boundaries between bouts of hard-working defence.

Hope also survived a chance to Moeen Ali... Umpire Marais Erasmus was initially unmoved, but three red lights on Ball Tracker prompted him to alter his decision.

England had the flawless start as James Anderson produced an edge off Kraigg Brathwaite, getting his out for a duck.

Kieran Powell (18*) and Kyle Hope (25*) will take up that challenge when play restarts at 13:30 BST on Saturday.

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