|Photos||Video & Audio||Blogs||Statistics||Archive||Shop||Mobile|
Ramadhin and Valentine take West Indies to a memorable win
A landmark day for West Indian cricket. West Indies won their first Test in England, a 326-run thrashing at Lord's, led by a mystifying display from their young spin twins Sonny Ramadhin and Alf Valentine. They were both playing their second Tests, having each only played two first-class matches before the tour. Valentine's match figures were 116-75-127-7 (the 75 maidens are still a Test record), and Ramadhin's 115-70-152-11; it was the slowest torture imaginable. They were abetted by 168 from Clyde Walcott, an innings that John Arlott described as being "of thunder, of almost biblical intensity". England never recovered, and lost 1-3 a series they had expected to win comfortably. A crowd full of West Indian fans didn't care, celebrating joyously, and a famous Calypso song - "With those little pals of mine, Ramadhin and Valentine" - was born.
The day Sachin Tendulkar made history by playing an Andre Nel delivery towards mid-off and scampering down the pitch to reach 15,000 one-day runs. He missed out on a 42nd hundred against South Africa in this game in Belfast, but that nudge past the bowler put him on a pedestal few can ever hope to reach. He finished with a staggering 18,426 ODI runs.
Birth of the gangling Victorian seamer Alan Connolly, a bit of an unsung hero for Australia in the sixties. He finished with 102 wickets, and four five-fors - none of which came in Aussie victories. His best figures were 6 for 47 against South Africa in Port Elizabeth... when Australia were routed by 323 runs. Unusually, Connolly excelled overseas, with 66 in 16 Tests. At home he took only 36 in 13. He also played county cricket for Middlesex.
When he became Yorkshire's youngest-ever player - at just 16 years 75 days - Paul Jarvis was burdened with a "new Fred Trueman" tag, but he never got close, taking only 21 wickets in nine Tests. Injuries didn't help, nor did the selectors' penchant for shunting him in and out of the team (those nine Tests came in five instalments, either side of Jarvis' ban for going on the South African rebel tour of 1989-90). Jarvis later played for Sussex and Somerset, but got nowhere near leaving the legacy people expected, although he has taken almost twice as many one-day wickets in India than any other Englishman.
A gargantuan opening partnership in Kandy. In a dead rubber against Pakistan, Sanath Jayasuriya and Marvan Atapattu put on 335, with Atapattu making his third Test double-hundred. In a match of only 155.4 overs, Atapattu was still there at the bitter end, 207 not out and having dead-batted all comers into submission.
Another weighty partnership, this one for the eighth wicket. Les Ames and Gubby Allen got England out of a hole by adding 246 against New Zealand at Lord's, with Allen making his only Test hundred and Ames his first in England. At the time it was the highest for the eighth wicket in Test history, but it's been passed three times, by Wasim Akram and Saqlain Mushtaq in Sheikhupura in 1996-97, by Nathan Astle and Adam Parore in Perth in 2001-02, and Stephen Fleming and James Franklin in Cape Town in 2006.
Birth of the link in the only three-generation Test-playing family. West Indian opener Ron Headley was the son of the great George and father of England seamer Dean. He played just two Tests, both in England in 1973. Headley played much of his cricket in England, for Worcestershire and Derbyshire.
Long before speed guns inflated Shoaib Akhtar's ego further, Worcestershire's Robert Burrows bowled Lancashire's William Huddleston in a County Championship match at Old Trafford - and sent the bail flying 67 yards. It's a record that even Shoaib didn't break.
A hundred on debut for Scott Styris, who made 107 against West Indies in Grenada on this day. He went on to add 69 in the second innings for good measure, and take two wickets. There was a near-miss for Mark Richardson, who made 95, and then crawled in the second innings to 71, taking five hours to do it. The match was drawn.
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
Rewind: When Eknath Solkar got under the skin of Geoff Boycott, leading to a three-year self-imposed exile from Test cricket
Review: Using secondary sources, a newspaper journalist tries to decipher Kevin Pietersen and his career beyond the prima donna stereotype
Dave Podmore: Let us now reflect on Lord's and look ahead to the next Test
Jimmy Adams talks about the West Indian love for fast bowling, batting with Lara, and living a dream for nine years
Anantha Narayanan: A look at the best batting and bowling streaks in Tests
What's wrong with their cricket? Well, what isn't?