Jermaine Blackwood scored a match-winning 95 as Test cricket’s big return ended with the West Indies chasing down 200 to defeat England by four wickets in the eerie silence of the Ageas Bowl ‘bubble’.
Blackwood would almost certainly have been an onlooker for the Raisethebat Series opener had Shimron Hetmyer and Darren Bravo not chosen to miss the tour over coronavirus concerns, but it was his opportunistic innings which wrestled the spotlight from England’s would-be hero Jofra Archer.
Sportsmail’s LAWRENCE BOOTH has the ratings from the Ageas Bowl.
Jason Holder set up victory with a nagging six for 42, and removed Ben Stokes in both innings
Rory Burns 6.5
Batted four and half hours for 72 runs, but England needed him to turn one of his starts into something substantial. His dismissal just before lunch on the fourth day gave West Indies the opening they needed.
Dom Sibley 6
Made up for his first-innings duck with a typically patient half-century on Saturday, but keeps getting caught on the leg side — a curious fragility for a player whose leg-side game is considered his bread and butter.
Joe Denly 5
Faces a struggle to keep his Test place after making 18 and 29 — scores that sum up his career. He has now reached double figures in 24 of his 28 Test innings, but hasn’t passed 35 in 17 of them.
England fast bowler Jofra Archer struck twice before lunch to raise hopes of a day-five victory
Zak Crawley 7
His second-innings 76 felt like the future, which could be bad news for Denly. It was full of clean straight-drives and judicious use of his feet to the spinner: should keep his place when Joe Root returns.
Ben Stokes 7
Top-scored and returned the best figures in the first innings then batted with verve and imagination in the second.
But both his dismissals were loose, and both triggered a collapse.
His decision to bat under grey skies proved costly.
England’s Ben Stokes (R) reacts as West Indies’ Jason Holder (L) grabs a run on the fifth day
Ollie Pope 4
A pair of 12s brought him back to earth after a heady winter, but Pope still possesses that rarity among current English Test batsmen: an average over 40.
Jos Buttler 5
Did well to make 35 on the second day. But his second-innings failure meant he has now made just one fifty in 21 Test innings since the start of last summer’s Ashes. Chose the wrong moment to drop a Test catch for the first time in two years.
Dom Bess 6
More than did his job in the first innings with the wickets of Hope and Blackwood, but the pitch didn’t offer as much last day help as many expected, and the marginal decisions started to go in West Indies’s favour.
Archer then had Shamarh Brooks trapped LBW to crush the visitors’ hopes of a win
Jofra Archer 7
Not quite himself in the first innings. But he stood alone among the England attack as West Indies chased 200: lethal with the new ball, he produced a brute with the old to get rid of Chase. Biffed a few runs too.
Mark Wood 6
Admitted he his lengths were wrong on the second evening, when West Indies were relieved to lose only one wicket. Figures of two for 110 did not vindicate the decision to drop Stuart Broad.
Jimmy Anderson 6.5
Unplayable at times in the first innings, when he took his Test tally to 587. But couldn’t work his magic second time round.
West Indies’ John Campbell was forced to leave the field after injuring his toe on day five
Kraigg Brathwaite 7
His three-hour 65 laid the foundation for West Indies’ big first-innings lead. Second time round, Archer exposed Brathwaite’s tendency to shuffle across his stumps.
John Campbell 6
A useful first innings 28. Hobbled off in the second after Archer pinned his right big toe, before returning to help his team over the line.
Shai Hope 5.5
Scores of 16 and nine continued his curious decline since he famously made his only two Test centuries in one game at Headingley three years ago.
Shannon Gabriel celebrated dismissing Archer after an impressive stint for the Englishman
Shamarh Brooks 6
Played some fluent strokes during his first-innings 39, but had no chance when Archer trapped him on the crease.
Roston Chase 7
A good all-round game. Innings of 47 and 37 were crucial in West Indies’ win.
Jermaine Blackwood 8.5
A superb match-winning 95. Rode his luck at times, but there are few better sights than his lofted drives.
Archer managed some excellent strikes before being dismissed as last man out for 23
Shane Dowrich 8
He may lack the obvious talent of Buttler, but he found a way of scoring runs. Tidy behind the stumps, if not infallible.
Jason Holder 9
Set up victory with a nagging six for 42, and removed Stokes in both innings. Match figures of 42-14-91-7 underlined why he is ranked No 3 in the Test bowling rankings. Earns an extra point for his dignified pre-match tribute to Black Lives Matter.
Alzarri Joseph 7
His bowling in tandem with Gabriel on Saturday evening swung the game back West Indies’ way. Out-smarted Crawley, and was too quick for Buttler.
West Indies’ John Campbell, left, greets England captain Ben Stokes after winning the Test
Kemar Roach 6
Didn’t take a wicket, but kept things tight, conceding only 91 runs in 41 overs. That allowed Gabriel to go for broke.
Shannon Gabriel 8.5
Showed his class and experience to take nine wickets — including a crucial burst on the fourth evening. Loves hitting the stumps: five of his victims were bowled.