’Keep­ers with tons Down Un­der

Daily Nation (Barbados) - - Darian King - Sabina Park Old Traf­ford Kens­ing­ton Oval Mike King Old Traf­ford

Only two West In­dian wick­et­keep­ers have Test hun­dreds in Aus­tralia, and both are Ja­maicans.

The late Gerry Alexan­der and Jeffrey Du­jon are the only glove­men to score Test tons Down Un­der.

In the 1960-61 se­ries, which proved to be his last se­ries, Alexan­der fin­ished on a high with a hun­dred and five fifties, scor­ing 484 runs in the mem­o­rable five-match rub­ber. His 108 at Syd­ney in Jan­uary 1961,was the first cen­tury by a West In­dian ‘keeper in Aus­tralia.

Du­jon be­came the sec­ond ‘keeper to achieve the feat when he cracked 139 off the four-pronged pace at­tack of Terry Al­der­man, Rod­ney Hogg, Ge­off Law­son and Carl Rack­e­mann at Perth in 1984.

In­dia are now cel­e­brat­ing the mile­stone by way of Rishabh Pant’s ton at Syd­ney, a few days ago. The dash­ing Pant is the first wick­et­keeper with two Test tons as a 21-year old. Both of them have come out­side Asia.

Ja­maican Ivan Bar­row had a brief ca­reer - he played just 11 matches but made a ma­jor im­pact. He is the youngest man to keep for the West Indies, the first West In­dian to score a hun­dred in Eng­land, and by ex­ten­sion, the first wick­et­keeper from the Caribbean to do so.

Bar­row was just 19 years and three months when he made his de­but at

in April 1930 against Eng­land. At a time when team se­lec­tion was based on which ter­ri­tory the match was be­ing played, there were eight Ja­maicans in the side, four of whom were mak­ing their de­but.

At in 1933, he be­came the first West In­dian to score a cen­tury in Eng­land, and when he achieved the feat Ge­orge Headley was on 99 to­gether they added 200 for the sec­ond wicket, the 22-year-old Bar­row mak­ing 105.

Bar­row is one of just four West

In­dian wick­et­keep­ers with hun­dreds in Eng­land. The oth­ers are the late

Sir Clyde Wal­cott, Du­jon and De­nesh Ramdin.

Sir Clyde’s su­perb un­beaten 168 at Lords on the his­toric 1950 tour of Eng­land, is the high­est score by a West In­dian wick­et­keeper. Wal­cott, who was just 24, was play­ing in his 11th Test.

The hard-hit­ting Sir Clyde, kept wicket in his first 15 matches, tak­ing 27 catches and ef­fect­ing 11 stump­ings. He av­er­ages 40 as a wick­et­keeper with three cen­turies.

Sir Clyde is also the first West In­dan wick­et­keeper to score a Test cen­tury in In­dia. He was just 22 when he made 152 at Delhi in 1948. It was his maiden ton and it came in his first over­seas Test.

Over­all ten Bar­ba­di­ans have kept wicket for the West Indies - Sir Clyde, David Mur­ray, Derek Sealy, Shane Dowrich, Court­ney Browne, David Al­lan, Thel­ston Payne, Cam­mie Smith, Sey­mour Nurse and Shai Hope.

At against Aus­tralia in 1965, Nurse, fresh from mak­ing his maiden hun­dred (201), kept briefly in the sec­ond in­nings with Jackie Hen­driks in­jured. Nurse took one catch, re­mov­ing skip­per Bobby Simp­son off the bowl­ing of Sir Garfield Sobers.

Cam­mie Smith had a stump­ing and took a catch against In­dia at the Queen’s Park Oval in Trinidad in 1962 on his fi­nal Test ap­pear­ance when Hen­driks was off the field. In his first match as a wick­et­keeper at in 1939, Derek Sealy stumped the great Wally Ham­mond and caught Ed­die Payn­ter and Len Hut­ton.

The youngest wick­et­keeper to score a Test cen­tury is In­dia’s Ajay Ra­tra, who was just 20 years and five months, when he made an un­de­feated115 off the West Indies in An­tigua in 2002.

Robert Chris­tiani, the first Guyanese to score a Test hun­dred, was a wick­et­keeper good enough to make two stump­ings in the Cal­cutta Test in 1948-49 when sub­sti­tut­ing for the in­jured Wal­cott.

Jeffrey Du­jon

Gerry Alexan­der

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