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June 14 down the years

A captain's dream

A left-arm colossus is born

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Alan Davidson: a man for all conditions
Alan Davidson: a man for all conditions © PA Photos

Birth of the Australian fast bowler Alan Davidson, the closest rival to Wasim Akram as the greatest left-arm seamer in history. Like Akram, Davidson was also a lusty lower-order hitter. His finest hour was the tied Test of 1960, which he went into with a broken finger and came out of with a significant record - first man to score 100 runs and take 10 wickets in a Test. He was a captain's dream, offering control (his economy rate was 1.97 runs per over throughout his Test career) and penetration. And he delivered in all conditions. In six Tests in India, Davidson took 30 wickets at an average of 15. That included 12 for 123 in Kanpur in 1959-60 - a match that Australia still lost.

South Africa's Boeta Dippenaar, born today, made his debut in 1999 and got his maiden Test century the next year against New Zealand at the Wanderers. But he unluckily lost his place at the top of the order once Herschelle Gibbs was recalled. South Africa's disastrous 2003 World Cup gave him another chance and he made it count with an unbeaten 177 against Bangladesh. While his strength was in his timing and reach, Dippenaar struggled to avoid playing across the line and around his back-foot defensive strokes. In a one-day career of over 100 matches, he made four centuries and averaged 42.23. He was part of the Champions Trophy squad in 2006 but was overlooked for the World Cup the following year. After leading the Eagles to the SuperSport Series title in 2007-08, he announced his retirement from international cricket.

The beginning and the end of England opener Andy Lloyd's Test career. Lloyd was given his Test debut on his home ground of Edgbaston in the first Test against West Indies, but within half-an-hour he was on his way to hospital, after losing a Malcolm Marshall bouncer that clattered sickeningly into the temple-guard of his helmet. Lloyd didn't play any more first-class cricket that summer, and never played for England again.

A remarkable double was completed on this day by Leicestershire's CJB Wood, who carried his bat for the second time in the match against Yorkshire in Bradford, and scored a hundred in both innings as well. In all, he batted for 520 minutes and was on the field throughout the match. It was all to no avail, as Yorkshire won by five wickets.

Slow torture in a ridiculous World Cup match at Old Trafford, as England bowled Canada out for 45 - in 40.3 overs. Only Franklyn Dennis (21) made double figures, while Chris Old helped himself to figures of 10-5-8-4. England breezed to victory by eight wickets, with the small matter of 46.1 overs to spare.

Don Bradman set the tone for a summer of plenty with 144 not out as Australia comfortably saved the first Test against England at Trent Bridge. It was the match in which Charlie Barnett nearly became the first Englishman to score a Test century before lunch. He got to 98 in the first session and reached a century from the first ball after lunch. Bradman, meanwhile, made a century in every Test he batted in that summer, although there were only three: rain washed out the scheduled third, and he was unable to bat in the fifth - when Australia lost by a record innings-and-579 runs - because of a fractured ankle sustained while bowling. In 19 Tests in England, Bradman averaged 102.84, with a staggering 11 centuries.

Strange goings on in Portsmouth. Less than a year after the vandalising of the Headingley Test pitch, the third day of Hampshire's match against Yorkshire had to be switched after the pitch was dug up overnight. The match ended in a draw.

Other birthdays
1923 Don Smith (England)
1972 Claude Henderson (South Africa)
1973 Daniel Marsh (Australia)
1975 James Knott (England)
1984 Mark Cosgrove (Australia)

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

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