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England v West Indies

The four Jermaine Blackwood lives that could cost England dear

Ben Gardner by Ben Gardner
@Ben_Wisden 3 minute read

Ben Gardner looks at the four chances England missed against Jermaine Blackwood on the fifth day against West Indies at the Ageas Bowl.

England are no strangers to a Jermaine Blackwood assault, with the pugnacious right-hander now averaging more than 50 against them, compared to 26 against everyone else. And his mere presence seemed to spook them on the fifth day at the Ageas Bowl, as he survived four chances on the way to his half-century, taking West Indies close in their pursuit of 200. Here’s a look at the Jamaican’s quartet of let-offs.

Over 18.6, Jermaine Blackwood dropped by Ben Stokes off Dom Bess on five

In this instance England’s normally superlative slip fielder partly had himself to blame. Seeing Blackwood gearing up for a cut, he started moving to his right, only for a thick edge to fly fine. Stokes tried to change course, and managed to get fingertips to it, but the chance went down. Had he stayed where he was, it would have flown straight to him, albeit very quickly.

Over 26.2, Jermaine Blackwood dropped by Jos Buttler off Ben Stokes on 20

It was Stokes’ turn to have a catch go down off his bowling, with Blackwood missing a pull shot and gloving down the leg-side. Buttler couldn’t collect the ball by his ankles, appearing to hurt his thumb in the process.

Over 29.6, Jermaine Blackwood missed run out by Zak Crawley on 29

A classic mix-up, with Roston Chase calling his partner through for a single, and Blackwood indulging in what should have been a fatal hesitation. But Crawley, swooping in in the covers, couldn’t pick up the ball. A throw to the keeper is all that would have been needed to complete the job.

Over 30.2, Jermaine Blackwood dropped by Rory Burns off Ben Stokes on 29

A sharp chance, since it went quickly to Burns at gully, but also very much a catchable one. Replays showed Stokes had overstepped in any case, so even had Burns caught it, England would be regretting a different sort of let-off.

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