At Manchester, June 16, 18. Sri Lanka, put in to bat, gained a notable victory by 47 runs. It was the only win by an associate member of the ICC in the competition and was richly deserved. Moreover, it was gained without the help of the Sri Lanka captain, Anura Tenekoon, who damaged a hamstring the previous day at practice. The Sri Lankan batsmen enjoyed themselves on a docile pitch that was of little help to a rather harmless Indian attack, but it should be remembered that in 1975 Sri Lanka amassed 276 runs at Australia's expense at The Oval. A second wicket stand of 96 by Wettimuny and Dias off 25 overs was a joy to watch, Wettimuny excelling with stylish drives and Dias effecting many attractive wristy strokes. Mendis followed with a powerful display in which he struck Ghavri, Kapil Dev and Amarnath each for 6. Pasqual, a confident left-handed schoolboy and the youngest player in the 1979 World Cup, joined in the fun with Mendis as 52 runs were added off seven overs.
Owing to a late start on Saturday, India had to wait until Monday before starting their task of 239 to win. Gavaskar and Gaekwad began with a stand of 60 and at lunch India were 117 for two, wanting 122 from the remaining 25 overs. The turning-point came when Viswanath ran himself out for 22. Afterwards, Somachandra de Silva varied his leg-breaks with such skill that he dismissed Vengsarkar, Patel and Amarnath, whereupon Opatha, who had done nothing with the new ball, returned with additional pace and swept through the tail. Mendis was named Man of the Match.
© John Wisden & Co