First Test Match


At Georgetown, March 2, 3, 4, 6, 7. Drawn. No team gained the upper hand in a hard-fought match in which fortunes fluctuated fascinatingly until the last day when Greenidge and Haynes mounted a spirited challenge after West Indies had been set 323 to win on Australia's declaration half an hour before lunch. With twenty overs remaining, West Indies required 152 at 7.6 runs an over with the openers still together. The crowd had grown during the day in the prospect of a thrilling finish, but they were disappointed as neither Greenidge nor, particularly, Haynes could sustain his momentum. West Indies ended 73 short.

Although without two of his leading fast bowlers, Holding and Marshall, both out with injuries, Lloyd put Australia in after he had won the toss and Garner quickly gave West Indies an advantage with three wickets. Rain halted play just after lunch on the opening day with Australia 55 for three, and they had declined next day to 182 for nine when the last man, Hogg, joined the all-rounder Hogan. Ignoring his captain's message to order Hogan to hit out, Hogg batted for two and a half hours while dominating a record partnership of 97 for Australia's last wicket against West Indies.

Lawson, fined some £150 by the Australian team management for angrily snatching his hat from umpire Narine after an appeal the evening before, put West Indies under pressure with the wickets of Greenidge and Richardson in an inspired spell at the start of the third day. Richards fell cheaply to a low catch by the wicket-keeper just before lunch and West Indies had to concede a lead of 49, despite Haynes's painstaking 60, which took him almost four and a quarter hours. Garner and Daniel then reduced Australia to 60 for five in their second innings before the last specialist batsmen, the left-handers Border and Phillips, arrested the decline with a partnership of 125. The early loss of Phillips on the final day, after rain had reduced the previous afternoon by nearly an hour and a half, left Australia uncertainly placed at 209 for seven, but Lawson and Hogan batted well enough to encourage Hughes into a declaration. As Greenidge (three 6s, ten 4s) and Haynes (nine 4s) progressed towards their centuries, Hughes was obliged to defend desperately, but the target he had set West Indies proved just too difficult.

© John Wisden & Co