Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : April 17th 2015 Contents A62
Guardian www.guardian.co.tt Friday, April 17, 2015
NORTH SOUND---Jermaine Blackwood has
hailed the influence of the legendary Sir
Vivian Richards, along with Jamaica and
West Indies teammates Andre Russell and
Chris Gayle, following his maiden Test hun-
dred here Wednesday.
The 23-year-old, in only his sixth Test,
stroked a superb unbeaten 112 to help fire
West Indies up to 295 in their first innings,
in reply to England s 399 on the third day
of the opening against England at the Vivian
Richards Cricket Stadium.
He told reporters that Sir Viv had always
impressed on him the importance of com-
bining patience with positive stroke-play.
"I met Viv at the [High Performance Cen-
tre] last year and he s been a very important
person [in my career]," Blackwood said.
"He s taught me a lot and I ve really learned
a lot from Viv. He s always been talking to
me about staying positive and always con-
tinuing to play the way I play but to be just
a bit patience. He was always telling me to
stay patient and positive at the same time."
Both these elements characterised Black-
wood s innings. He consumed 224 balls and
5-1/2 hours at the crease but also slammed
14 fours and two sixes, in a display of his
He also praised Russell, describing him as
a "big brother" who has always provided
encouragement and inspiration.
"Andre Russell is like my big brother. I ve
known him for about ten years now and I
actually stay with Russell in Jamaica right
now. I m from Westmoreland but he s from
[Old Harbour in] St Catherine, and we actu-
ally live under the same roof, so he s like a
big brother to me," Blackwood explained.
"Almost every day we train at home and
I always put in the hard work. Me and Russell
always talk about cricket and even this morn-
ing he sent me a voice note on my phone
telling me to stay focussed and positive, bat
for long, and make sure I get the century for
him." Blackwood, who made his Test debut
against New Zealand last year in the
Caribbean, said he was thrilled to finally
reach three figures after making a few half-
centuries in his short career.
He also pointed out that Gayle, who like
Russell is currently campaigning in the Indian
Premier League, had also given him plenty
support during the innings.
"It was a very special moment. I ve been
getting a lot of messages from my family
and everybody back home, a lot of close
friends, and they just wanted me to capitalise
on the score that I had overnight and go on
and make a big hundred. I have three half-
centuries and to make a Test century is really
a big [moment]. I am very happy," he
"And Chris, Chris is like my father. I talk
to Chris like almost every day and he was
backing me all the way to make the hundred."
Resuming the day on 30, Blackwood survived
a dropped on a chance on 43, to reach his
half-century, 1-1/4 hours before lunch. He
then had to negotiate a barrage of short-
pitched bowling from England s seamers, as
they tried to dislodge him with aggression.
The right-hander said he had been unfazed
by the method of attack.
"It s Test cricket. I m used to it. I m from
Jamaica [and] they are a lot of fast bowlers
from Jamaica so I m not afraid of any short
balls," he said nonchalantly.
"I would take one or two licks (blows) but
after that the bowlers are going to get tired
and that is the time I m going to dominate."
Blackwood hails Sir Viv, Gayle
Sir Richie satisfied
with younger players
St John's---Manager of the West Indies cricket
team and former captain, Sir Richie Richardson,
has expressed confidence in the players breaking
into the regional squad.
Sir Richie, who spoke on Wednesday from the
Sir Vivian Richards Cricket Ground (SVRCG), said
that with the continued progression of the young
players, the future of West Indies cricket is bright.
"We have some good young talents who have
been working hard and that is what it is all about,
it is good to see youngsters who are prepared to
work hard," he said.
"We have young Kraigg Braithwaite and he
didn t score heavily (on Tuesday) but he has worked
extremely hard, has shown a lot of improvement
and has gotten into the habit of scoring centuries.
Young Blackwood s first scoring shot was a six
which shows a lot of confidence and young Jason
Holder as a fast bowler has been maturing quite
fast so we just have to keep working with the
guys and keep trying to get the best out of them."
Jermaine Blackwood produced a fine perform-
ance in the West Indies first innings against Eng-
land in the opening match of a three-Test series
at the SVRCG, on Wednesday, by amassing 112
not out from 220 deliveries.
Sir Richie also commended the public for their
show of support thus far for the first Test.
"I am very impressed, especially on the first
day because I honestly did not expect that many
people even though a lot of promotion was done.
I think it s the best I ve seen in Antigua in terms
of the promotions and the preparations. Also, it s
the best condition I ve seen the stadium and the
surroundings so I am very impressed and would
like to congratulate all involved, like the Ministry
of Sports, Cricket Association and WICB who
have really put in the effort to make sure that
things go well here for us," he said. The first Test
Kalli happy with
Georgetown---Former West Indies Test player,
Alvin Kallicharran, who is conducting a Guyana
Cricket Board (GCB) Youth Developmental Pro-
gramme across the country, said he is impressed
with the vast young talents he has met over the
On Wednesday, he visited the Enterprise and
Enmore grounds on the East Coast of Demerara
and had sessions with the youths of those areas.
Some players highlighted a number of challenging
issues with their techniques and Kallicharran was
able to have a practical assessment of these pressing
issues by creating drills and scenarios to emphasise
and address the matters at hand.
Speaking to the youths and coaches after the
drills, he said, "Guyana is not short of cricketers
in any way; there are a lot of talents present who
need to be nurtured to go on to the higher lev-
Kallicharran also touched on the need for fast
bowlers to improve, noting that for this to happen,
the right pitches have to be produced and fast
bowlers must bowl a lot more overs in training
Earlier this week, he conducted similar sessions
with players at Albion and Blairmont Community
Centres in Berbice, and the Ghandi Youth Organ-
isation in Georgetown.
To date, all sessions conducted by Kallicharran
have been met with high commendations from
cricketers and coaches. The former left-handed
batsman stated that the GCB initiative to have
past players like him coaching the young cricketers
should help a great deal in the developmental
aspect of the game in Guyana.
Smith shows his strength on both sides of wicket
•From Page A64
hit three fours, and his dismissal put Eng-
land in an even stronger position to pull off
a win on Friday s final day. Earlier, Gary Bal-
lance struck his fourth Test hundred---a knock
of 122---as England, resuming the day on 116
for three, enforced their dominance over the
next two sessions.
The left-hander faced 250 deliveries and
counted 11 fours and two sixes in just under
5-1/4 hours at the crease, and shared to key
partnerships to keep England on top. He put
on 114 for the fourth wicket with Root who
hit a breezy 59 off 79 balls with five fours
and a six, to post his second half-century of
Jos Buttler hit an up tempo unbeaten 59
from 56 balls to give the visitors quick runs
down the order. When Root was bowled,
dragging on to fast bowler Jason Holder on
the stroke of the first hour of the morning,
Ballance and Ben Stokes combined to post
60 for the next wicket. Stokes, not out on
33 at lunch, made 35 before missing a charge
at left-arm spinner Sulieman Benn and going
stumped off the fourth ball after the inter-
val.Unbeaten on 92 at the break with England
on 224 for four, Ballance reached his landmark
in the seventh over after lunch when he
punched Benn down the ground for four.
Along with Buttler, he then went on the
attack, clearing the ropes at long on with
part-time off-spinner Samuels before finally
holing out to Jermaine Blackwood at deep
mid-wicket off Benn. Buttler, who smashed
five fours and two sixes, put on a hasty 52
off 40 deliveries with Chris Jordan (13) before
Jordan holed out to Darren Bravo at deep
mid-wicket off seamer Kemar Roach, a deliv-
ery after he was bowled by a no-ball.
Pacer Jerome Taylor finished with two for
42 while Benn picked up two for 115. Brath-
waite s early demise put West Indies imme-
diately on the backfoot but Smith and Bravo
buckled down in a partnership headlined by
discipline and positive stroke-play.
Smith has so far hit seven fours off 131
deliveries while Bravo was fluent in gathering
three boundaries off 87 balls. Both batsmen
were watchful immediately after tea but pro-
gressively grew in confidence and opened
up to play several handsome shots.
Smith, who only returned to Windies
colours for the recent tour of South Africa
following a three-year break, showed his
strength on both sides of the wicket. He
clipped seamer Jordan to the mid-wicket
boundary and followed up by smashing a
short ball from Broad to the ropes in the
same area a couple overs later, to move into
In the bowler s next over, he collected
another boundary through point and brought
up his fifty with a streaky four to third man
off off-spinner James Tredwell. (CMC)
ENGLAND 1st Inns 399
WEST INDIES 1st Inns 295
ENGLAND 2nd Inns (o/n 116-3)
A Cook c Benn b Taylor .....................................13
I Trott c wkp Ramdin b Taylor .......................4
G Balance c Blackwood b Benn ...............122
I Bell run out ..............................................................11
J Root b Holder ......................................................59
B Stokes st Ramdin b Benn ..........................35
JC Buttler not out ................................................59
C Jordan c Bravo b Roach ...............................13
Extras (b1, lb6, w5, nb5) .................................17
TOTAL (7 wkts dec; 86 overs) .......... 333
Did not bat: S Broad, J Tredwell, J
Fall of wickets: 1-15 (Trott), 2-20 (Cook),
3-52 (Bell), 4-166 (Root), 5-226 (Stokes),
6-281 (Ballance), 7-333 (Jordan).
Bowling: Taylor 15-5-42-2, Roach 14-1-53-1
(nb2), Holder 17-5-63-1 (w1, nb2), Benn
26-3-115-2, Samuels 15-0-53-0.
WEST INDIES 2nd inns
(target: 438 runs)
K Brathwaite c Root b Broad ..........................5
D Smith not out ....................................................59
DM Bravo c Jordan b Root ............................ 32
M Samuels not out ................................................ 2
TOTAL (2 wkts, 40 overs) .....................98
Fall of wickets: 1-7 (Brathwaite), 2-90
Bowling: Anderson 7-0-26-0, Broad 9-1-
27-1, Tredwell 11-6-14-0, Jordan 4-1-16-0,
Stokes 5-0-11-0, Root 4-3-4-1.
Position: West Indies require a further
340 for victory.
Toss: West Indies.
Umpires: Billy Bowden, Steve Davis; TV---
Bruce Oxenford. CMC
West Indies vs England
England's Gary Ballance hits
a four from a delivery of West
Indies' Sulieman Benn to
bring up a century. AP PHOTO
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