Eng, WI take a knee in first Test

Afp, Southampton

9 July, 2020 12:00 AM printer

International cricket resumed after a four-month coronavirus shutdown on Wednesday as England and West Indies players took a knee in support of the Black Lives Matter movement under grey skies in Southampton.

England stand-in captain Ben Stokes won the toss following a rain delay and opted to bat but just three overs were possible before the weather intervened again.

The players gathered in a semi-circle on the pitch before play started to observe a minute's silence in memory of the victims of the coronavirus and West Indies great Everton Weekes, who died last week at the age of 95.

They then dropped to one knee in support of the global campaign against racial injustice following the death in the United States of George Floyd in May.

Both teams are wearing BLM logos on their shirts during the three-match series.

West Indies players also wore black gloves on their right hands in an echo of the "Black Power" protests made famous by US athletes at the 1968 Mexico City Olympics.

All three Tests are taking place behind closed doors, with the first at the Ageas Bowl and the second two at Old Trafford.

The morning was lost to rain and when play eventually started, England lost Dom Sibley off the 10th ball, when he was bowled by Shannon Gabriel.

England were 1-1 when rain stopped play. They came back for seven balls and scored two more runs before rain stopped play for a second time.