Despite his side's struggles in the longest format in recent years, Holder believed such performances were always within West Indies capabilities, and hailed the victory as just rewards for some previously unheralded toil.
"Shai Hope was just outstanding, to come out in the first innings and score his maiden Test century".
Thanks to Hope and Brathwaite's heroics, the West Indies brought themselves level at 1-1 in the series going into the third and final Test at Lord's, which begins on September 7. It is also the second-highest successful chase ever in Test matches at Headingley and now gives them a chance to win the series at Lord's.
After bowling out England for 258, Windies posted 427 to secure a valuable first innings lead of 169 runs. Together, Hope and Brathwaite put on 390 runs in the match.
England needed a lift and got it just before tea when Brathwaite drove at a wide delivery from Ali and edged into the hands of Stokes at slip before leaving to a standing ovation.
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"Shai Hope played exceptionally well", said Root. Alastair Cook dropped Brathwaite on 4 and Stuart Broad dropped him later too which would have exposed Windies' fragile lower-middle order far earlier in the day. "When the captain Joe Root got out they were 40-odd for four [overall] and we then dropped a catch soon after so the big moments we didn't play well at all", Estwick told reporters.
West Indies win would have been even more emphatic had they not dropped several catches which amounted to a total of 238 runs.
A mixture of calm defiance combined with judicious attacking saw them frustrate the England attack to the point that James Anderson, who had a run-in with opener Kieran Powell, and Stuart Broad, who was warned for kicking the pitch petuantly, were left increasingly disgruntled.
Hope pushed Broad for a single to complete a superb century off 175 balls, including 13 fours, as he achieved something no one else had managed in 127 years of first-class cricket at Headingley - a ground that has been home to such Yorkshire and England batting greats as Herbert Sutcliffe, Len Hutton and Geoff Boycott.
Blackwood, who uppercut Broad for six, tried to win the match in style but, having removed his helmet, he was stumped off Ali for 41, having put on a vital 74 with Shai Hope.