Second Test

West Indies v Australia

At Port of Spain, March 26, 27, 29, 30, 31, April 1. Drawn. Simpson surprised all by putting the West Indies in to bat on what seemed to be the most innocent of pitches. His gamble was accepted as a high compliment to Hall and Griffith for, if there was to be any life in the wicket, it would be in the first hour or so.

Simpson's strategy, however, went beyond mere survival at the start, and if catches had not gone to ground he might well have gone close to having the last laugh. Generally Australia's ground fielding was faultless, particularly during a classic exhibition of stroke play by Butcher and Sobers. Both were run out, the victims of poor judgment.

While Hall was largely defeated by the slowness of the turf, and a sore heel, Griffith maintained a torrid attack, including bumpers. His performance did not pass without criticism.

He came within a touch of achieving a breakthrough, but Cowper and Booth courageously barred his way at the crucial stage. They were mainly responsible for Australia's lead of 87. Cowper's century established him in more ways than just a technically sound batsman. His stout heart and fighting cricket re-established his side's morale when it threatened to become dangerously low. After that, the game dragged to an inevitable and inauspicious draw.

© John Wisden & Co