West Indies 1979

2010-12-13 14:29
1979 - West Indies


West Indies

Who was there?
The 6 Test nations England, Australia, West Indies, India, New Zealand, Pakistan, as well as Sri Lanka, who were still not a Test nation, and minnows Canada.

Tournament Star
Vivian Richards, whose 138 off just 157 balls including 11 fours and 3 sixes in the Final set the West Indies Juggernaut up for consecutive World Cup victories.

Missed the point
England skipper Mike Brearley (64 runs from 130 balls) and perennial plodder Geoff Boycott (57 off 105 balls), whose tortoise-like opening stand in the Final meant even the big hitters Graham Gooch and Ian Botham had too much to do chasing the West Indies total.

What happened in the Final?
It took a lot to upstage a brilliant Richards century, but Collis King managed it. In his finest hour (77 minutes, actually, but no-one was counting) King blasted 86 for 66 balls, clouting ten fours and three sixes. Richards ended the innings by walking across his stumps and flicking Hendrick into the Mound Stand for six: 286 for 9. In reply England's openers put on 129 - but too slowly, using up more than half the available overs. Brearley made 64 from 130 balls and Boycott 57 from 103. With Larkins at No. 7, it was a strong batting side ... but they had too much to do, as Joel Garner (5 for 38) zeroed in on the base of the stumps, and 183 for 2 turned into 194 all out as England suffered the biggest collapse in World Cup history – 8 wickets for just 11 runs.

Cricket is just like that
He may have been a stalwart opening batsmen, renowned for his dour attitude and emphasis on technical proficiency, but during the 1979 World Cup, England's Geoff Boycott turned a few heads with his bowling ability. Secret weapon Boycott, bowling his little medium-pacers round the wicket, with cap reversed, took 2 for 15 v Australia, and 2 for 14 at the death against Pakistan, when he lured Sikander Bakht into a brainless swipe while Imran Khan was winning the game at the other end. This persuaded England to pick four recognised bowlers for the later games. Boycott even took a wicket in the semi-final, but the plan unravelled in the final itself - the 12 overs England cobbled together from part-timers Boycott, Gooch and Larkins cost 86.


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