Blackwood shines as West Indies close on test victory

Cricket - First Test - England v West Indies - Rose Bowl Cricket Stadium, Southampton, Britain - July 12, 2020   West Indies' Jermaine Blackwood in action, as play resumes behind closed doors following the outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19).   (Adrian Dennis/Pool via REUTERS)
Cricket - First Test - England v West Indies - Rose Bowl Cricket Stadium, Southampton, Britain - July 12, 2020 West Indies' Jermaine Blackwood in action, as play resumes behind closed doors following the outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19). (Adrian Dennis/Pool via REUTERS)

SOUTHAMPTON, England, July 12 (Reuters): Jermaine Blackwood's unbeaten fifty led West Indies to 143-4 at tea chasing 200 to beat England on a gripping final day of the first test at the Ageas Bowl on Sunday.

 

The visitors lost three early wickets after opener John Campbell retired hurt, but Blackwood (65 not out) shared a partnership of 73 with Roston Chase to revive the hopes of the touring side. Shane Dowrich was unbeaten on 15 at the interval.

 

Barbados-born paceman Jofra Archer dismissed Kraigg Brathwaite for four with a moving ball that the opener edged onto the stumps before he trapped Shamarh Brooks lbw.

 

Mark Wood bowled Shai Hope for nine to leave the West Indies in trouble at 27-3 before Chase and Blackwood set about repairing the damage.

 

Archer, who tormented the batsmen with his pace and bounce, had Chase caught behind for 37 with a fine delivery but Dowrich provided solid support as the West Indies edged towards their target.

 

Earlier, England were bowled out for 313 in their second innings after resuming on 284-8, with the overnight pair of Archer and Wood failing to offer much resistance.

 

Wood edged paceman Shannon Gabriel to wicketkeeper Dowrich and Archer became Gabriel's fifth victim of the innings as he edged a short-pitched ball to the keeper on 23.

 

Gabriel finished with figures of 5-75 -- his sixth five-wicket haul in tests -- while Chase and Alzarri Joseph picked up two wickets apiece.

 

The test is the first international cricket match after a 117-day absence because of the COVID-19 pandemic and is being played without fans.

 

The second and third tests will be held in Manchester.