April 5 down the years

Tony's Trini heroics

England's last win against West Indies for a long, long time

Tony Greig took 13 wickets in England's 26-run win in Port-of-Spain in 1974 © Getty Images

The finale of a six-day Trinidad thriller. England had to defend a target of 226 to take the final Test against West Indies and square the series, and they did so with just 26 runs to spare. Tony Greig was the hero. Bowling offspin, he added 5 for 70 to his first innings 8 for 86 as West Indies collapsed from 63 for 0 to 199 all out. It was the end of Garry Sobers' and Rohan Kanhai's careers. As England celebrated, little did they know that they would not win another Test against West Indies for 16 years.

A proud day for Mr and Mrs Waugh, whose sons Mark and Steve became the first twins to appear together in a Test match, against West Indies in Trinidad. The experience was so good that they did it a further 104 times.

Birth of one of the greatest fielders in history. South African Colin Bland, who was born in Bulawayo and had Scottish grandparents, was without peer in the covers: quick, balanced, and with a frighteningly accurate throw. At Lord's in 1965 he ran out Ken Barrington and Jim Parks with a couple of scintillating direct hits, and when he caught New Zealand captain John Reid with a two-handed blinder in Johannesburg in 1961-62, Reid stopped to applaud the catch as he left the field. Oh, and Bland batted too, well enough to get a Test average of 49, although, peculiarly, he averaged only 17 in South African victories.

In many sports, the best coaches are not always great players, and John Buchanan, who was born today, is a case in point. His career comprised seven first-class matches and an average of 12, but he's had more success as an innovative, groundbreaking coach. He helped Queensland to their first Sheffield Shield in 1994-95, and though his revolutionary methods got up a few people's noses during a fractious year at Middlesex in 1998, he was at the helm for 15 of Australia's record-breaking 16 consecutive Test wins, and when they won the World Cups in 2003 and 2007. After quitting the Australia job he took over at the helm of the IPL's Kolkata franchise. But after two turbulent years, during which the team did no better than sixth, he was sacked and replaced with Dav Whatmore. In 2011, he was appointed New Zealand's director of cricket and proceeded to controversially hire a lawn bowls manager as the national selection manager. Buchanan quit the role in 2013 due to "family circumstances".

One of those peculiarly English tour-match humiliations. In the immediate aftermath of Trinidad (Curtly Ambrose, 46 all out and all that), England lost to a West Indies Board XI by eight wickets. It was worse than that, though: in the second innings they collapsed from 140 for 1 to 165 all out, with Rawl Lewis (strike rate in Tests: 220.7) ripping through the middle order. Mind you, Phil Tufnell was batting at No. 8. After this farce, who would have thought that, just eight days later, England would storm the Bridgetown fortress, where West Indies had not lost a Test for 59 years?

Other birthdays
1882 Don Blackie (Australia)
1909 Gerald Bond (South Africa)
1912 Lorna Kettels (Australia)
1921 Les Jackson (England)
1945 Ann Mitchell (Australia)
1973 Mandie Godliman (England)
1973 Matt Windows (England)