Underdogs storm Australia's party
"The most embarrassing defeat in our sport history" was how Sydney's Daily Telegraph summed up a performance that reverberated around the globe. Bangladesh had been 500 to 1 outsiders for their opening encounter with Australia in the NatWest Series, but having restricted a lacklustre opposition to 249 for 5, they set about scripting a miracle. Led by the diminutive Mohammad Ashraful, whose even 100 was his maiden one-day century, they paced their chase to perfection. With seven required from the final over, Aftab Ahmed walloped Jason Gillespie out towards the River Taff for a massive six. A scrambled single later, the great upset had been completed.
One of the greatest bowling performances in one-day international history. The script couldn't have been better. The first World Cup, and an England-Australia semi-final in front of a raucous Yorkshire crowd. But on a pitch that was damp and green even by Headingley's standards, the fairy tale required England to win the toss. They didn't, and left-arm seamer Gary "Gus" Gilmour, in his first match of the tournament, moved the ball all over the shop, in the air and off the pitch. Even figures of 12-6-14-6 don't tell the full story: his wickets were all in the top seven - Amiss, Wood, Fletcher, Greig, Hayes and Knott - and left England for dead at 37 for 7. They limped to 93 - which might have been enough, but for Gilmour's run-a-ball 28, which rescued the Aussies from a fraught 39 for 6.
Some unseemly violence amid the tranquil surroundings of the Nevill Ground at Tunbridge Wells, all from the bat of Kapil Dev. Kapil brutalised the Zimbabwean bowlers in an unforgettable display of hitting, as India recovered from 9 for 4, when he came to the crease, and then 17 for 5. Wickets continued to fall at the other end, but it didn't matter as Kapil creamed an amazing 175 not out off 138 balls, with 16 fours and six sixes. The next highest score was Syed Kirmani's 24 not out, and in all, Kapil's innings comprised 66% of India's total of 266 for 8. Before it, India's qualification for the semi-finals had been in doubt. Seven days later they were world champions, courtesy another sensational victory, over West Indies in the final.
A glorious, hazy summer began with England beating Australia by five wickets in the first Test at Headingley. The star was Tim Robinson, who continued a storming start to his Test career with a stately 175, while Ian Botham put the boot in with a violent 51-ball 60. John Emburey chipped in with 5 for 82 in the second innings - it was his only five-for in 33 Tests in England. This match was only Robinson's sixth Test, and he ended it with an average of 71.11.
Only 70 minutes' play was possible between Surrey and Essex at The Oval, but that was enough for Tom Richardson to exploit a wet wicket and take 10 for 45. He added another five in the second innings two days later.
A grinder is born. Blair Pocock, the meticulous New Zealand opener, set the tone for his Test career when he made 34 off 118 balls and 28 off 96 on his debut, against Australia in Perth in 1993-94. Throughout his Test career he scored his runs at a rate of 29.8 per 100 balls - that's less than two an over. Pocock never managed a century in 15 Tests, although he did make six fifties in his last nine appearances.
Birth of Arthur Fagg, the England opener whose career highlight was making two double-centuries in one match, for Kent against Essex in Colchester in 1938. Fagg later became a Test umpire. He died in Tunbridge Wells in 1977.
A one-day rout. In an ICC Trophy match at the Cannock & Rugeley club, Papua New Guinea massacred Gibraltar by 369 runs. PNG stormed to 455 for 9 off 60 overs, before Gibraltar - whose team included future Woking FA Cup hero Tim Buzaglo - fell apart for 86.
Birth of Billy Wade, the South African wicketkeeper who played 11 Tests either side of the Second World War. He was a very handy batsman - his first-class average was 48.45 - and he made a Test century against England in Port Elizabeth in 1948-49. Wade later became a Test umpire.
The only game of the second World Cup that was won by an associate nation - over three days, owing to a late start and the fact that the next day was a rest day. Sunil Wettimuny, Roy Dias and Duleep Mendis made half-centuries on a placid Old Trafford track to take Sri Lanka to 238. India started their chase on the Monday confidently, but after G Viswanath was run out for 22, they lost their last seven wickets for 59. Legspinner Somachandra De Silva and medium-pacer Tony Opatha took three each.
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
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