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January 21 down the years

Flight of fancy

When David Gower buzzed a cricket field in a Tiger Moth

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David Gower and John Morris: back on terra firma
David Gower and John Morris: back on terra firma © Getty Images
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1991
On the third day of England's tour match against Queensland, David Gower and John Morris hired a Tiger Moth and buzzed the Carrara Oval, where Robin Smith had just returned to form with a hundred. But the dour England management didn't see the joke and the pair were fined. It could have been worse. Morris had intended dropping a water bomb from the plane.

1888
A Horseshoe is born. Australian opener Herbie Collins, a bookmaker by trade, was so nicknamed because of his good fortune, both in the gambling world and also in winning the toss. He played 19 Tests between 1920 and 1926, starting his career at the top level with scores of 70, 104, 64 and 162, all against England. He made two further hundreds, including a mighty 203 against South Africa in Johannesburg in 1921-22. He also captained Australia to a 4-1 win over England in 1924-25 - and to defeat in England 18 months later. He died in his native Sydney in 1959.

1964
A great spinner takes his Test bow. Mischievous Indian leggie Bhagwath Chandrasekhar took 242 wickets over a 15-year period, starting with 4 for 67 against England in Bombay. England had debutants of their own, including wicketkeeper JG Binks - surely the only Test player to be one initial away from a Star Wars character. The match was a draw, a fair effort from England, who lost Ken Barrington (with a fractured finger), Phil Sharpe, John Edrich and John Mortimore (all stomach disorders) before the match, and then Micky Stewart (with dysentery) at tea on the first day. Don Wilson (Yorkshire's perennial No. 9) ended up batting at No. 3.

1970
A not-so-great English legspinner who took 20 wickets from 15 Tests at 76.95 was born today. Ian Salisbury, so successful in county cricket, was found out at the highest level. He was famously mauled by Hansie Cronje after being recalled at Trent Bridge in 1998, but his nadir came in Pakistan in 2000-01. He took only one wicket in three Tests, the celebration of which prompted the Daily Telegraph's Michael Henderson to write, "It was as if a backward child had suddenly learned how to spell his name and deserved a treat".

1948
A startling 12 players made their debuts today in the first Test between West Indies and England. A few of them went by the wayside - remember Berkeley Gaskin? Or Winston Place? - but a few made names for themselves: this was also the debut of Clyde Walcott, Everton Weekes and Jim Laker. The match was drawn, but only after Laker - who bowled Walcott with his fourth ball - had put down a marker: he took 7 for 103 in the first innings.

1954
Controversial fare in Jamaica, where England were well beaten by West Indies in the last Test of George Headley's career. Headley bowed out with 16 and 1, out each time to Tony Lock, who was no-balled for throwing in the second innings. Worse still, the wife and son of umpire Perry Burke were attacked after he gave local hero John Holt out lbw for 94 in his first Test innings. And West Indies captain Jeff Stollmeyer was repeatedly booed for not enforcing the follow-on, a decision justified by his side's 140-run victory on the final day.

1865
Birth of the tragic Bill Brockwell, the England cricketer who spent his final 15 years homeless. A decent allrounder who played seven Tests between 1893 and 1899, he became penniless after retirement and despite an appeal in the Sporting Life, he was living rough when he died in Richmond, Surrey in 1935.

1956
The day England Test captain Mike "MJK" Smith played rugby union for his country. Sadly for him, Wales triumphed 8-3 at Twickenham, and that was that for Smith's career as a rugby international.

2000
A glimpse of the enormous potential of Abdul Razzaq. He followed up a lusty 52-ball 70 with figures of 5 for 48 as Pakistan beat India by 32 runs in the Carlton & United Series one-day match in Hobart. Razzaq went on to get the Player-of-the-Tournament award - but Australia bagged the big prize, beating Pakistan in the final.

Other birthdays
1957 Shaukat Dukanwala (UAE)
1960 Phil Horne (New Zealand)
1971 Chanderkanta Kaul (India)
1981 Jamie Dalrymple (England)
1981 Gavin Ewing (Zimbabwe)
1985 Riaz Afridi (Pakistan)

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

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