An Aussie to the core

Wisden CricInfo staff

September 26, 2003

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All Today's Yesterdays - September 26 down the years

September 25 | September 27

1943
Where to start with Ian Chappell, who was born in Adelaide 59 years ago today? An Aussie to the core, Chappell was a brave, adaptable batsman, good enough to make 14 hundreds in 75 Tests, but will be best remembered as one of his country's finest captains - Dennis Lillee rated him as the best captain he played under. He was also an excellent fielder at first slip. He is now a respected and hard-hitting TV commentator.

1931
The birth of one of India's greatest batsmen. An outstanding player of quick bowling at a time when most of his countrymen played the pacemen like startled rabbits, Vijay Manjrekar was a master technician and better than his Test average of 39.12 suggests. In his first Test innings overseas, he hit a memorable 133 against Fred Trueman and Alec Bedser at Headingley in 1952. He made seven hundreds in 55 Tests including an unbeaten 189 against England at Delhi in 1961-62. Nimble on his feet despite carrying a few surplus pounds, he also made an unbeaten 102 in his final Test innings in 1964-65. He died at the age of 52 in Madras in 1983. His son Sanjay Manjrekar was an Indian regular in the 1980s and '90s.

1935
A true character was born in Manchester. Bob Barber was a fearless, attacking left-handed opener and useful legspinner who represented Lancashire, Warwickshire and England with distinction. A natural cricketer and entertainer whom the Wisden Almanack described as "virtually uncoached", Barber had an effervescence that made him extremely popular, especially in Australia. Though from the other side of the Pennines, he was very much in the mould of Darren Gough. He averaged 35 in 28 Tests and would have played more but for business commitments. His only Test hundred was a majestic 185 at Sydney in 1965-66, which led to his being made a Wisden Cricketer of the Year in 1967.

1995
A famous victory for Sri Lanka at Sialkot. They beat Pakistan by 144 runs in the third Test to seal their first-ever victory in a three-match series overseas. It was also Pakistan's first home series defeat since 1980-81 and only the fourth instance - three of which had been in the previous year - of a side winning a three-Test rubber after losing the first match. It came after the sort of collapse that only Pakistan are capable of. They slipped to 17 for 5 chasing an unlikely 357 to win, after which, for all the admirable defiance of Moin Khan's unbeaten 117, there was only ever going to be one winner.

1876
In 1901 South African allrounder Charles 'Buck' Llewellyn, who was born today, became the first man to score 1000 runs and take 100 wickets for Hampshire in an English first-class season. For good measure, he repeated the feat in 1908 and 1910. Llewellyn played 15 Tests between 1895 and 1912, averaging 20 in the middle order and 29 with his left-arm spinners at a time when South Africa were largely Test cricket's whipping boys. He played a crucial role in their first Test win overseas, and their first against Australia, at Adelaide in 1910-11. He was a Wisden Cricketer of the Year in 1911.

1999
A red-letter day for Indian slow left-armer Sunil Joshi, who made the most of a spinner's paradise in the LG Cup match in Nairobi to return the remarkable figures of 10-6-6-5, the fourth most economical in ODI history. There were no cheap wickets here either: Joshi's famous five were Boeta Dippenaar, Herschelle Gibbs, Hansie Cronje, Jonty Rhodes and Shaun Pollock. With South Africa routed for 117, their second-lowest one-day total, India romped home by eight wickets with over 27 overs to spare - but the South Africans would have the last laugh in the final.

1971
One of Test cricket's less successful debutants was born. When he made his Test debut for the West Indies against New Zealand in Barbados in 1995-96, Patterson Thompson had a shocker. Making Devon Malcolm look like a metronome, he bowled 26 no-balls and returned match figures of 22-1-135-4 - which flattered him. He played just one more Test, in Australia the following winter, and that was that. His Test strike rate, 45.6, would do anyone proud but his economy rate, 5.65, would make even a joke bowler blush.

1999
Australia got out of jail in southern Sri Lanka. A tropical storm at Galle meant that only 4.2 overs were possible on the final day as the second Test against Sri Lanka was drawn. In all, only 30.5 overs were possible on the last three days. For Australia, already one-down in the series, it was a good job too: on a raging turner Sri Lanka were in total control, 123 ahead with 10 second-innings wickets intact.

Other birthdays
1947 Franklyn Dennis (Canada)
1972 Mark Haslam (New Zealand)

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

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