|Photos||Video & Audio||Blogs||Statistics||Archive||Fantasy||Mobile|
A Sri Lankan legend is born
Sanath Jayasuriya, who was born today, left his mark on the cricket world with a series of stunning assaults. He was the player of the 1996 World Cup, most famously battering 82 off only 44 balls against England in the quarter-finals. That same winter, against Pakistan in Singapore, he creamed 134 off only 65 balls, and later a 17-ball 50. Jayasuriya was no one-day biffer, though: his 340 against India in Colombo in 1997-98 was the highest Test score by a Sri Lankan at the time. In England in 1998, he hammered 213 at The Oval. And on the first morning of the 2000-01 series against South Africa, in Galle, he slashed a stunning 148 off only 156 balls, so demoralising the South Africans that they subsided to their first innings defeat to a side other than Australia and England. Jayasuriya could also bowl. In 2007, he became only the third spinner to reach 300 wickets in ODIs. He also captained Sri Lanka, but resigned after the 2003 World Cup even though his team reached the semi-finals. Jayasuriya was the first to play 400 ODIs. At the age of 38 he quit Tests, and at 42 international cricket altogether. In ODIs he sits in third place on the all-time run-makers' table, with well over 13,000 runs.
Peter Pollock, the brilliant South African, was born today. As a brawny fast bowler, he was right out of the top bracket. On his debut, in Durban in 1961-62, he demolished New Zealand with match figures of 9 for 99. Pollock's zenith was probably the Trent Bridge Test of 1965. He took two five-fors, and his younger brother Graeme cracked a glorious 125 in South Africa's 94-run victory. There's something about those Pollock genes - Peter's son Shaun wasn't bad either. Having taken 15 wickets in his last Test series, against Australia in 1969-70, Peter became chairman of selectors when South Africa returned to the fold in 1991-92.
The first Test hat-trick in England. JT (that's Old Jack) Hearne's trio could hardly have been more distinguished: the Australians Clem Hill, Syd Gregory and Monty Noble, all for ducks. The match was abandoned as a draw when rain washed out the final day. Tragically, it is best remembered for an epileptic fit suffered by Johnny Briggs on the first night of the match. He did not play Test cricket again, and was dead within three years.
An England captain is born. The bespectacled, scholarly Mike Smith was in charge for exactly half of his 50 Tests, between 1963-64 and 1966. A grafting right-handed batsman, he made two of his three centuries in his first seven Tests. But after his third - in Cape Town, in 1964-65 - Smith's form fell away badly. He passed 50 in only one of his last 20 Tests. He also once played rugby for England, against Wales, and he later managed a couple of England tours in the 1990s. Smith's son, Neil, also played for England in one-day internationals.
Some record-breaking strokeplay at Lord's, as England became the first team to score over 500 runs in a single day's play. They put on 503 runs for the loss of two wickets - and still had time to declare and have a bowl at South Africa at the end - a record that lasted until Sri Lanka took 509 in a day off Bangladesh early in 2002. In all, there were 522 runs scored, though England and India smashed that particular record in Manchester 12 years later. The plunderers were Jack Hobbs (211), Herbert Sutcliffe (122), Frank Woolley (134 not out) and Patsy Hendren (50 not out). These were the days of three-day Tests, so England had reason to get a move on. It worked, too, as they won by an innings and 18 runs.
The Don's Lord's masterpiece. Bradman's average at Lord's was a relatively paltry 78, but in his first Test innings there he lashed a glorious 254. It propelled Australia to 720 for 6 - the highest total in any first-class match at Lord's - and ultimately a seven-wicket victory.
A Dutch star is born. Ryan ten Doeschate, who played a big role in the Associates' bid for more international recognition with his century against England in the 2011 World Cup, had been around in the international circuit for five years by then. He made his maiden one-day hundred against Bermuda in 2007, and also scored a half-century against South Africa in the World Cup that year. In 2010 he won the ICC Associate and Affiliate Player of the Year award, and later landed an IPL contract with Kolkata Knight Riders.
He's not as tall as West Indies' legendary bowlers, but Kemar Roach, born today, can generate some seriously skiddy pace. He made his Test debut in 2009 as part of the second-string side picked after the main players went on strike. West Indies lost the series to Bangladesh but gained a fast bowler deserving of a place in a full-strength side. He troubled batsmen on the tour of Australia that followed. He certainly enjoyed bowling to them, taking his maiden ten-wicket haul when Australia toured the Caribbean in 2012. In between he took three consecutive five-fors, against South Africa at home, and in Sri Lanka.
Birth of an Englishman, in Bombay, who faced the first ball in World Cup cricket. John Jameson was a rampaging Warwickshire opener who never quite made it at the top level. He played four Tests, in 1971 and 1973-74, but he was more at home in county cricket. In 1974, when batting for Warwickshire, he smashed 240 not out in a record partnership of 465 for the second wicket with Rohan Kanhai against Gloucestershire at Edgbaston. He later became a first-class umpire, coached Sussex, and then became assistant secretary of MCC.
A New Zealand batsman is born - in Glasgow. Gordon Rowe only played one Test, against Australia in Wellington in 1945-46, and bagged a pair, bowled by Bill O'Reilly in each innings. He died in Palmerston North in 1995.
1882 CC Morris (USA)
1890 Horace Chapman (South Africa)
1954 Sharon Tredea (Australia)
1960 Kevin Duers (Zimbabwe)
1967 Rudi Steyn (South Africa)
1973 Dodda Ganesh (India)
1976 Mark Higgs (Australia)
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
Part six: Martin Crowe on David Gower's footwork and the steely determination beneath his elegance
In 1993 and 2006, South Africa's bowlers had vastly different results in Colombo. Brett Schultz and Makhaya Ntini look back
Rob Steen: Nothing could have prepared us for James Anderson's sudden outpouring of grief at Leeds, a reaction both spontaneous and moving
Ask Steven: Also, best post-war win/loss record, most runs in two calendar years, and most ducks in a Test
Jon Hotten: Occasionally these days, at the lower levels, we're brought face to face with the kind of cricket conditions our ancestors lived with
A look back at five high-profile exhibition matches
Bide your time, put your body behind each delivery, and play with the batsman's mind