Fifth Test Match

India v Pakistan 1979-80

Two men shaped this decisive Indian victory - Gavaskar, with an innings of 166, the longest played in a Test match by an Indian (593 minutes), and Kapil Dev, with an outstanding all-round performance. He took eleven wickets in the match, including seven for 56 (the best figures of his Test career) in the second innings, and contributed a boisterous 84 to India's total of 430. The great-hearted bowling of Kapil Dev minimised India's self-imposed disadvantage of going into the match with only four bowlers, off-spinner Yadav having been left out.

The ball bounced more at one end than the other, but otherwise the Chepauk pitch was a better batting surface than in any of recent Test on this ground. Pakistan, bowled out for 272, frittered away the advantage of winning the toss, although their batsmen did give the impression of playing with more discipline than in the previous Tests. Majid Khan ended his partnership. Miandad batted extremely well, preventing the bowling from getting on top by running singles and 2s. Asif, too, promised much until Ghavri induced a snick with a beautiful ball, slanted across from over the wicket.

India were batting before the second morning was an hour old, and although never in deep distress, they also lost wickets regularly. At the end of the day they were 161 for four, with Gavaskar on 92. Next day, he and Sharma, the other overnight batsman, put on a century partnership which lasted until an hour after lunch, and following the dismissal in close succession of Sharma and Kirmani, he played a completely passive role while the flamboyant Kapil Dev hammered the tired attack.

India's innings stretched well into the morning of the fourth day, and at lunch, when Pakistan were 24 for two only thirty-eight minutes after the start of their second innings, it looked as if the match and the series would be decided before the day was out. Both Sadiq and Mudassar had fallen to loose shots, and in less than another hour, Pakistan were 58 for five. Zaheer failed yet again, out like Mudassar, glancing Kapil Dev, who took the first three wickets. Kapil Dev and Ghavri dared Majid Khan to hook, which he did profitably a couple of times before skying Gavri to long leg. Going round the wicket, Kapil Dev had Asif caught from a square-cut, and it was only when Wasim Raja joined Miandad that resistance was at last forthcoming. Raja batted with the same abandon as the batsmen who had comed to grief, but with more luck. Miandad was more discreet and built up his innings over three hours.

Pakistan still had three wickets in hand at the start of the last day and they did not concede them without a struggle. But India were left to get only 76 in the last innings, with three and three-quater hours available, and did so without loss to take a winning 2-0 lead in the series.

© John Wisden & Co