Forever tainted

Wisden CricInfo staff

April 16, 2003

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1963
The luscious strokeplay of Salim Malik, who was born today, has been irrevocably tarnished since he became the first person to be banned for life for match-fixing. But in his day Malik was a wonderful wristy batsman. He made 15 Test hundreds, although oddly, seven of them were between 100 and 102. His finest hour with the bat came in 1994-95 - ironically, the series in which he was first accused of match-fixing - when he made two majestic centuries (one of them a double) to deny Australia victory at Rawalpindi and Lahore and give Pakistan a fraught series victory. Malik was also the master of the Headingley terror-track: he top-scored with 99 in 1987, and five years later, with Neil Mallender wreaking such havoc that only one other Pakistani passed 20, Malik played imperiously for 82 and 84, both not out.

1986
In Antigua, West Indies put the seal on England's second blackwash in 18 months. Still punch-drunk after Viv Richards's whirlwind century the day before, England were brushed aside for 170, with Roger Harper returning the startling figures of 12-8-10-3. England were well beaten by 240 runs; it would have been even worse had West Indies not sent down 61 no-balls in the match. The dreamy Ashes triumph of the previous summer seemed a long time ago, and England were off and running on a four-year spell in which they won only three Tests in 40.

1878
Birth of the only man to captain England at football and cricket. RE "Tip" Foster played only eight Tests, but he certainly made his mark with comfortably the highest score by a Test debutant, a mighty 287 at Sydney in 1903-04. It also remains the highest score by an Englishman in Australia. Foster was a refined middle-order batsman with a touch of the Dexters, who graduated to the captaincy against South Africa in 1907. He won six football caps, and he and all six of his brothers played for Worcestershire. He suffered from diabetes, and was just 36 when he died in 1914.

1940
The West Indian allrounder David Holford, who was born today, was a handy lower-order batsman and a tidy, if anodyne, legspinner. In his second Test, at Lord's in 1966, he saved the match by adding 274 for the sixth wicket with Garry Sobers, his cousin. Holford's 105 there was his sole Test century, and he only managed one five-for as well, a matchwinning effort against India in Barbados nearly ten years later. He later managed West Indies and was also chairman of selectors for a time.

1993
A sensational start to the unofficial world championship showdown, in which West Indies crumbled from 63 for 0 to 127 all out on the first day of the first Test against Pakistan in Trinidad. But in the last hour, Pakistan themselves slid from 100 for 2 to 113 for 7, and their lead was eventually restricted to 13. It was was all over inside three days when Carl Hooper spun Pakistan to defeat in their second innings.

Other birthdays

1871 John King (England)
1890 Fred Root (England)
1943 John Watkins (Australia)
1958 Raghuram Bhat (India)
1968 Manzoor Akhtar (Pakistan)

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

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