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Sarwan, Ramdin frustrate England

ENGLAND face a quest for survival after West Indies made 749 for nine declared in Bridgetown, Barbados, thanks to a masterful 261-run partnership between double centurion Ramnaresh Sarwan and Denesh Ramdin.

The tourists, who survived two overs at the end of the fourth day of the fourth test to close on six without loss, trail by 143 runs and now have virtually no chance of winning the series which West Indies lead 1-0 with one match remaining.

Sarwan fell just nine runs short of a triple century, after batting from the evening of the second day, while wicketkeeper Ramdin made 166, his maiden century, before being bowled by Graeme Swann.

The West Indies score, the ninth highest innings total in a test match, sets up an unexpectedly tricky final day for Andrew Strauss's side after it made 600 for six declared in its first innings.

No team has ever lost a test match after making such a big first innings total but West Indies will take heart from the first test when they bowled a panicking England out for 51.

That, however, was on a very different wicket than the placid surface at the Kensington Oval and a draw still remains the most likely outcome. That would leave England needing to win in next week's test in Trinidad to tie the series.

Swann headed the England attack with 5-165 from 50.3 overs while James Anderson was rewarded for a whole-hearted effort with 3-125.

Sarwan said that it was the best he has played in his 78 Tests.

"I certainly think so, taking into consideration the fact that we fielded for two days," Sarwan said. "It took a lot out of me physically as well as mentally so probably it's one of the better innings I've played."

The Guyanese batsman's previous highest score in tests was 261 not out against Bangladesh at Kingston, Jamaica, in 2004 but had no other score over 139 before this match.


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