The second World Cup, officially called The Prudential Cup, proved, like the first in 1975, a great success, and again West Indies carried off the title. Unlike four years earlier, it was not blessed throughout with blissful sunshine during the fortnight it was in progress - June 9 to June 23.Nevertheless, the three Saturdays provided fine weather and there was only one bad period - June 13, 14, 15 - when not a ball could be bowled in the match between West Indies and Sri Lanka at The Oval. The ground at Old Trafford was also affected, but two days sufficed for England to beat Canada in a low-scoring match.
Again eight countries took part, and from a cricketer's point of view it was a shame that once more South Africa were left in the cold. To fill the two remaining places, a separate tournament was organised among associate members of the International Cricket Conference. From this emerged Sri Lanka, who took part in 1975, and Canada.
The matches were confined to one innings of 60 overs for each side. No bowler was allowed more than twelve overs per innings and the umpires applied strict interpretation in regard to wides and bumpers to prevent negative bowling.
The Prudential Assurance Company put £250,000 in the kitty and the gate receipts from the World Cup came to £359,700, almost double the £188,000 for the first competition. The total attendance last summer was 132,000 compared with 160,000 four years earlier, the drop being almost entirely due to the bad weather. The surplus, distributed to the full and associate members of the International Cricket Conference, came to £350,000.
Prizemoney amounted to £25,900. West Indies, the winners, received the Prudential Cup and £10,000; England, runners-up, £4,000; Pakistan and New Zealand, losing semi-finalists, £2,000 each; and winners of group matches £500 each. There were also Man of the Match awards: £300 to Vivian Richards (West Indies) in the final, £200 each in the semi-finals, and £100 for the nominated player in each group match.
At their meeting which followed the World Cup, the International Cricket Conference agreed to make the competition a four-yearly event with the 1983 tournament again being staged in England.
Match reports for
5th Match: Sri Lanka v West Indies at The Oval, Jun 13-15, 1979