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Blackwood: The key was playing my natural game
New West Indies batsman Jermaine Blackwood says that the key to his successful entry into Test cricket was playing his natural game.
Blackwood scored 63 off 103 balls, hitting six fours and two sixes, as he helped the West Indies to reach 460 all out in reply to New Zealand’s 221 all out. Batting a second time the New Zealanders reached 73 for one at the close of the third day.
Blackwood speaking to reporters at the close of play said: “When I went out there I was a bit nervous for the first over but after that I settled down and played my natural game and this really helped me.
“Having Shivnarine Chanderpaul out there was also a big help as he was coming up to me and telling me to play my natural game and just settle down.”
Blackwood said he enjoyed his time out in the middle and around the West Indies players.
“Being around some really good players is tremendous. Having to play my first match with guys like Chris (Gayle) and Shiv is tremendous and they have been good to me and this is helping me as I go about this first match.”
The Jamaican added that his stint at the Sagicor High Performance Centre (HPC) in Barbados has really helped his game.
“The HPC has really helped me with my game. I was allowed to concentrate on my cricket while there and bat many more balls. I was able to leave a lot of balls and take my time a bit.”
Blackwood, who up until three weeks ago did not even have a First Class century, now has three and a Test fifty. He said batting longer was the key.
“Batting more balls is what got me to triple figures in the games before the Test and even this 63 I got here is because I was able to play balls on their merit. I am not going to change my game much, if a ball is there to be hit, I am going to hit it and this should lead to success.”
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