JAMAICA’S cricket coach Junior Bennett says the selection of batsman Jermaine Blackwood in the West Indies squad to face New Zealand in the second Test match comes as no surprise.
The 22-year-old Blackwood, uncapped at the senior international level, and the left-hander Leon Johnson, 26, replace middle-order batsman Marlon Samuels and left-handed opener Kieran Powell in the 14-member set-up for the match which begins tomorrow in Trinidad & Tobago.
“It definitely doesn’t come as a surprise to me,” Bennett told the Sunday Observer yesterday.
“I’ve always believed that once he’s selective (in his stroke play) then he will score big runs. It’s an opportunity and I hope that he grabs it with both hands and makes the best use of it.”
The middle-order batsman, who made his first-class debut in 2012, has been criticized for not getting bigger scores because of his uncompromising attacking tendency, but this season he has significantly curbed that instinct.