More cricket calypsos

Many of you would be familiar with “Cricket, lovely cricket” first heard at Lord’s in 1950 and probably the one about Gavaskar after the 1971 series. There are, in fact, a number of other cricket-related calypsos which are summarised here. Lord Kitchener was living in Britain through the 1950s and sang tributes to Alec Bedser (during the 1953 Ashes) and Frank Tyson (after the 1954-55 Ashes). All of these (besides the long version of “Rally Round the West Indies”) can be seen here:

https://silvertorch.com/cricketsongs.html

Background reading here:

https://www.theguardian.com/culture/2002/jun/28/nottinghillcarnival2002.nottinghillcarnival

Personal note: My father came to Britain from India through the Tilbury Docks a few months before the SS “Empire Windrush” docked. On the evening of January 30, 1948 he heard the newspaper seller yelling “Extra! Read all about it! Gandy killed by Hindu gunman!”. Coincidentally his first grandchild was born exactly 39 years later.

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More about the honors boards at Lord’s-3

Having seen the honors boards for neutral Tests and for England, we now look at the corresponding boards for visitors playing Tests at Lord’s.

First, the 105 centuries by visitors:

Centuries at Lord's-1

Centuries at Lord's-2

Centuries at Lord's-3

The highest score here is 259 by GC Smith for SA in 2003.

India’s DB Vengsarkar is the only visitor to score 3 centuries at Lord’s, while several others have scored 2.

Centuries in each innings were made by Headley (106 and 107 for WI, 1939).

Centuries on debut were made by Graham (107 for Aus, 1893) and Ganguly (131 for Ind, 1996). Ganguly’s 131 is the highest by anyone making his Test debut at Lord’s. Graham was the first visitor to score a century at Lord’s.

Now we look at the 85 five-fors by visitors:

5-for at Lord's-1.JPG

5-for at Lord's-2

The best innings bowling by a visitor is 8-38 by McGrath for Aus in 1997, which is just behind Botham’s 8-34.

CTB Turner, Hadlee and McGrath took 3 five-fors apiece, and several others took 2.

Five-fors by visitors in each innings:

5wi in both innings at Lord's

Massie’s effort was on debut, and remains the best bowling for Australia in any Test. It was also the best match bowling by any debutant until India’s Hirwani inched ahead with 16-136 in 1987.

The following visitors took 5-fors on their Test debut at Lord’s:

5wi at Lord's on debut

Massie’s 8-53 is the best here. Nissar’s debut was in India’s first Test.

Visitors who took 10 wickets in a match at Lord’s:

10-for at Lord's

Ramadhin’s effort came in WI’s first victory in England (and the calypso “Cricket, lovely Cricket”).

Massie has the best match bowling figures at Lord’s. And he is the only visitor to take a 10-for on debut at Lord’s.

Looking at all-round performances, the following visitors have scored centuries and taken five-fors at Lord’s (though they may not be in the same Test):

Century and 5-for at Lord's

Mankad is the only visitor to score a century and take a five-for in the same Test at Lord’s (184 and 5-196 for Ind in 1952), while Miller did so in different Tests. Thus Botham and Mankad were the only ones to do this at Lord’s. Mankad’s efforts (which included another fifty) were not enough to prevent defeat for his side.

DJ Nash (56 and 11-169 for NZ in 1994) is the only visitor to score a fifty and take 10 wickets in a match at Lord’s. He and MM Ali are the only ones to do this at Lord’s.

This concludes our summary of batting and bowling performances which find their place on the various honors boards at Lord’s.

Now you may well ask “But wait! Where are Gavaskar, Tendulkar, Ponting and Lara? Or Lillee, Warne and Ambrose?”

Good questions, which deserve a separate post.

 

 

The saga of Uton Dowe

You might not have heard of the West Indian cricketer  Uton Dowe. Not surprising, as he played only 4 Tests in the early 1970s without great success. As we will see, he did lend his name to some of the better remembered PJs in cricket.

A summary of his cricket career:

http://www.espncricinfo.com/westindies/content/player/51653.html

At least his picture is there, unlike in many of the Cricinfo profiles of lesser-known players.

It is evident that he was not much of a batsman, so we move to his Test bowling performances:

dowe-bowling

His first Test was at Bridgetown vs India in 1970-71, the series which marked India’s first Test and series wins against the West Indies. This was the 4th Test of the series, and it is worthwhile to look at the scorecard: http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/engine/match/63069.html

Dowe took the wickets of Gavaskar (1), Krishnamurthy (1) and Jaisimha (0) to help reduce India to 70/6 facing a WI total of 501. This was the only time in 8 innings in this series that Gavaskar scored less than 50, so this was quite an achievement on Dowe’s part.

In those days the Indian lower order were not expected to stage comebacks, but times had changed and Sardesai (150), Solkar (65) and even Venkat and Bedi contributed to a total of 347. The match ended tamely with Gavaskar making his second Test century (117*). Dowe finished with 4/69 and 1/22. He again played in the 5th Test with less success, with 2/99 and 0/55. West Indies narrowly escaped defeat and a 2-0 series loss here.

Now we come to the Gavaskar calypso:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0V2UUuKcIeA

Note this stanza in which our friend Uton Dowe figures:

“Govindraj and Durani
Solkar, Abid Ali
Dilip Sardesai and Viswanath
They make West Indies bowlers
Look like second raters
When those fellas came out here to bat
West Indies tried Holder and Keith Boyce
They had no other choice
They even try with Uton Dowe
But ah sure that they sorry they bring him now

Anyway, he played 2 more Tests. Against NZ in the first Test of the 1971-72 series, he took 3-75 and 1-46 and was not seen again in the Test side for that series. Incidentally that 5-Test series was all-drawn. This is the 4th and last time this has happened, and the only such series not involving India.

He was to play one more Test, which was against Australia in 1972-73. This time he took 1-96 and 0-72, while Keith Stackpole took a particular liking to his bowling:

http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/engine/match/63100.html

It was not surprising that this ended up in his Cricinfo profile:

Prone to being wildly erratic, he was mauled by Keith Stackpole to such an extent in the Jamaican Test of 1972-73 that the crowd erected a series of banners proclaiming an 11th commandment: “Dowe shalt not bowl.”

He did not play international cricket after that. But he should have the satisfaction of having his name immortalized in a calypso and an entry in any book of famous cricketing slogans.

A more detailed account of cricket calypsos (the 1950 one and the 1971 one) can be seen here: https://abn397.wordpress.com/2015/01/28/down-memory-lane-the-cricket-calypsos-of-1950-and-1971/