Led by a superb spell by veteran pacer James Anderson with the second new ball, England reduced the hots to 264-8 in their first innings by stumps on day one.
Windies skipper Jason Holder won the toss at Bridgetown and elected to bat first against an England side who opted to field two spinners in their playing XI while Stuart Broad missed out.
Openers Kraigg Braithwaite (40) and debutant John Campbell (44) started well for the hosts but missed out on their half-centuries before Darren Bravo fell for just two on his Test return.
Wicketkeeper Shai Hope (57) and Roston Chase (54) were then forging a promising partnership before it was curtailed by Anderson who had the former caught behind.
Chase and Shimron Hetmyer then chipped away for the hosts but Anderson produced a sensational spell with the new ball late in the day to give England the upper hand.
The pacer removed Chase, Shane Dowrich and Holder in quick succession to bring up 200 Test dismissals outside England and Wales.
All-rounder Ben Stokes struck with the second new ball as well by dismissing Kemar Roach for a duck to take his wicket tally to three.
The hosts were left ruing a failure of their batsmen to convert their starts into a big score as Anderson showed why he is still going strong at the age of 36 with another trademark display of swing and control.
West Indies first innings: 264-8 (89.2 overs)
Shai Hope – 57 (148)
Shimron Hetmyer – 56 not out
James Anderson – 4/33 (24 overs)
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