| GEO Sports|
| Cricket: England 301 for 3 against West Indies in fourth test|
| Updated at: 0643 PST, Friday, February 27, 2009|
BRIDGETOWN: An opening stand of 229 featuring a century from captain Andrew Strauss lifted England to a commanding 301 for three on the first day of the fourth test against West Indies in Barbados on Thursday.
Strauss made an excellent 142 after winning the toss and was well assisted by Alastair Cook, who struck 94, in a record English first-wicket partnership against West Indies.
The hosts will have gained some encouragement, however, from their performance in the final session when they removed both openers and Owais Shah (7) to peg back England's run rate.
But Chris Gayle's side will be rueing Jerome Taylor's drop of Kevin Pietersen off Fidel Edwards just before stumps, one of three spilled catches during the day.
Pietersen was unbeaten on 32 at the close with Paul Collingwood on 11.
West Indies lead the five-match series 1-0.