Nottingham: England captain Andrew Strauss was determined to post an even bigger score after his unbeaten century saw the hosts reduce West Indies' first innings lead in the second Test at Trent Bridge.

Strauss was 102 not out at the close of Saturday's second day, with England 259/2 in reply to West Indies' first innings 370 -- a deficit of 111 runs.

This was the 35-year-old left-handed opener's second hundred in as many matches after he ended an 18-month wait spanning 25 innings for a Test century with 122 in the five-wicket series opening win at Lord's.

On a beautiful batting pitch, and against a modest Windies attack, Strauss and Kevin Pietersen, 72 not out at stumps, added an unbroken 136 for the third wicket as England looked to go an unbeatable 2-0 up in this three-match series.

Strauss, asked to explain his recent form, said: "I suppose to a degree it's confidence but it's a strange game -- sometimes batting feels difficult, with a few runs under your belt it's easier.

"I'm delighted to be in form and determined to make the most of it. You can never look too far ahead. I'll focus on getting myself back in the morning -- that's a big enough challenge for me."

A curious fact of Strauss's Test career is that he's never added more than six runs when not out overnight on a hundred -- at Lord's it was just one run.

And with England still some way off a first innings lead, Strauss joked he might have to change his routine if he was to keep on batting on Sunday.

"It's nice to feel back in form and as a captain it's great to contribute and lead from the front," said Strauss, playing his 96th Test. "I've never got blindly drunk the night before so maybe that's an option.

"There's no reason why you can't (kick on the next day), that will be an opportunity for me tomorrow (Sunday)," explained Strauss, whose Test-best score remains the 177 he made against New Zealand in Napier in 2008.

Strauss's 21st Test century left him just one short of the England record of 22 held jointly by Walter Hammond, Colin Cowdrey and Geoffrey Boycott.

However, Strauss played down his achievement by saying: "It's a different game to those days, we play more cricket.

"You only have to look at Sachin Tendulkar to realise 21 is not that many (the India great has 51 Test hundreds). But it's still nice to get them."

Saturday proved a memorable day too for West Indies captain Darren Sammy as he completed a maiden Test century after being 88 not out overnight.

The all-rounder's place in the side has been repeatedly called into question, most recently by West Indies great Michael Holding, and a delighted Sammy said: "I'm playing against the number one team in the world and everybody wants to perform against the best.

"To do that (score a hundred) in this Test match with the bat, it feels good for somebody like me who has been under pressure from day one."

Sammy, whose 15 wicketless overs of medium-pace on Saturday cost 69 runs, helped rescue West Indies from the depths of 136/6.

Together with Marlon Samuels, who made 117, he shared a seventh-wicket stand of 204.

But neither Samuels, who only added 10 runs to his overnight score, nor Sammy lingered long after getting to a hundred.

"We're quite disappointed me and Marlon couldn't continue because we knew how flat the wicket was, as we saw when we bowled," said Sammy.

"We both should have carried on to get a bigger total for the team."


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