A general view as groundstaff remove the pitch covers as rain delays the start of play
A general view as groundstaff remove the pitch covers as rain delays the start of play Reuters

Heavy rain over Manchester delayed the start of play on the fourth day of the third and final test between England and West Indies at Old Trafford on Monday, offering the tourists the possibility of a reprieve.

West Indies, who have performed poorly with the bat, were reeling at 10-2 in their final innings after being set an imposing target of 399 runs to win the test and take the series.

They have two days in which to reach the target but only eight wickets standings and are facing an experienced England attack, where Stuart Broad is looking for his 500th test wicket after taking six wickets on Sunday.

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Rain was always expected for the fourth day, the reason why England accelerated the run rate in Sunday's evening session, seeking to build a large lead but still leave themselves enough time to bowl West Indies out again and win the test.

It is expected to rain for much of Monday but play should be possible on Tuesday.

The series is level after West Indies won by four wickets at Southampton before England's 113-run victory at Old Trafford.