Winner: India

Coca-Cola Cup (India), 1997-98

India, to no one's surprise, ran out easy winners in this triangular tournament with two junior nations, though there were a couple of notable results on the way to the one-sided final. Bangladesh won their first senior one-day international, at the 23rd attempt, when a fine all-round effort from Mohammad Rafiq guided them to a convincing victory over Kenya, though their other form was disappointing.

A much bigger talking point was Kenya's 69-run success against India. For India, who had already qualified for the final, it was a dead match, but Kenya, at last realising the potential of their batting, wholly outplayed them. Ravindu Shah made an impressive entrance to international cricket, hitting three fifties in his first four innings and ending up with 213 runs in all, and another Kenyan, Steve Tikolo, was named Man of the Series.

That one defeat aside, India were rarely troubled. They got away with giving some younger players a chance - 23 men were used in the five matches - and Tendulkar was rested for two games before coming back to score a century in the final. The most competitive aspect of the tournament came beforehand and involved the giant cola companies rather than the cricketers.

A contract between Pepsi-Cola and the Board of Control for Cricket in India had effectively barred their rivals Coca-Cola from sponsoring any of the hugely popular one-day series currently proliferating in India. But before the previous one-day competition, which pitted India against Australia and Zimbabwe, the Board, hoping to instigate a bidding war, had claimed that the agreement with Pepsi did not cover triangular events. After losing the court battle, the Board arranged this series and assumed Pepsi would be obliged the sponsor it. However, they baulked at a competition with limited potential for media exposure, citing a clause in their contract that stipulated matches had to be against full ICC members. Coca-Cola stepped in for an undisclosed sum.

Note: Matches in this section were not first-class.

Match reports for

1st Match: India v Bangladesh at Mohali, May 14, 1998
Report | Scorecard

2nd Match: Bangladesh v Kenya at Hyderabad (Deccan), May 17, 1998
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3rd Match: India v Kenya at Bangalore, May 20, 1998
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4th Match: Bangladesh v Kenya at Chennai, May 23, 1998
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5th Match: India v Bangladesh at Mumbai, May 25, 1998
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6th Match: India v Kenya at Gwalior, May 28, 1998
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Final: India v Kenya at Kolkata, May 31, 1998
Report | Scorecard

© John Wisden & Co