Moments in Time: The World Cup final that Sir Viv made into a mauling

Tomorrow marks the 41st anniversary of the West Indies famous second lien on the ICC World Cup trophy and it is fitting that today’s Moments in Time takes you back to the very final, played at Lord’s against none other than England.

In those days, a One-Day International was played over the course of 60 overs and very much resembled a One-Day Test match, with batsmen still maintaining, by today’s standards, very slow rates of scoring.

The West Indies were a little different, having produced batsmen like Sir Viv Richards, who ended his career with a strike rate of 90 when others were scoring in the high 60s.

Four years earlier, the West Indies captain, Clive Lloyd, the Super Cat, in front of 27,000 at Lord’s, scored 102 to give the West Indies a lien on the inaugural World Cup trophy.

On that day the West Indies needed to pull themselves out of the hole Australia had dug for them, and Lloyd’s innings helped them recover from 50-3 to post 291-8 before bowling out Australia for a game 274.

The West Indies would need this kind of heroism again, as the West Indies found themselves in unfamiliar territory at 55-3 and then 99-4.

Before that, the West Indies had marched through the tournament, scoring a 43-run win over Pakistan, a 32-run win over New Zealand, and a massive nine-wicket win over India en route to the final.

In fact, the West Indies only blip came against Sri Lanka after that match at the Oval was abandoned without a ball being bowled.

But not even the weather, it seemed, could stop the West Indies until June 23 when the combination of Mike Hendrick, 2-44, and Chris Old, 2-55, threatened to give England an easy target in the second-ever World Cup final.

Viv Richards had not had a spectacular World Cup to that point.

He had scored a struggling 42 against Pakistan in the game before, while scores of nine against New Zealand, and an unbeaten 28 against India did not show the Viv Richards everybody knows.

But today was a different day. Viv bided his time. Working through his lack of form, not wanting to lose another wicket with Gordon Greenidge (9), Desmond Haynes(20), Alvin Kallicharan (4), and Lloyd (13), all back in the pavilion.

For company, Sir Viv had Collis King, who truth be told, made his efforts at finding the Master Blaster form all the more easy.

King was savage, smashing 10 fours and three sixes on his way to a 66-ball 86.

All the while, Sir Viv was eyeing a big total. He would bat for almost half the innings, using 157 deliveries to score a masterful 138 not out.

The timing of the innings was brilliant and it helped the West Indies to 286-9. Deryck Murray, with five, was the only other batsman to score a run after King got out, with Viv singlehandedly taking the score from 238-5 to 286-9.

Along the way, Viv began to show why he was dubbed the Master Blaster, picking up good deliveries from outside off stump and dispatching them through midwicket despite fielders marauding those boundaries.

There was a square drive and a cover drive that disappeared to the boundary even on slow-motion replays, while he picked up the last delivery of the innings, moving outside off-stump to swing the effort high over square leg from a middle-stump line, one of three sixes he would hit on the day.

There were also 11 fours that didn’t count as much for their savagery as they did for excellent examples of good timing, placement and overall class.

Sir Viv was in his element. And the West Indies could not lose.

286 in 60 overs seems like an easy-paced run chase by today’s standards, but in those days, the target was monumental.

Scoring at 4.76 was always going to prove too much for England, who lacked the big-hitting of the West Indies middle order.

Openers Geoff Boycott, 57, and J Bearley, 64, scored at rates of 54.28 and 49.23 respectively, altogether too slowly to mount any serious challenge.

Only Graham Gooch, with 32 from 28 seemed to come to grips with what was necessary. England had been mauled and the legend of Sir Viv had just grown in stature some more.

Joel Garner with 5-38 from 11 overs was too stingy, and Colin Croft, with 3-42, was too aggressive and Michael Holding, with 2-16 from eight overs was too classy.

Paul-Andre Walker

Paul-Andre is the Managing Editor at SportsMax.tv. He comes to the role with almost 20 years of experience as journalist. That experience includes all facets of media. He began as a sports Journalist in 2001, quickly moving into radio, where he was an editor before becoming a news editor and then an entertainment editor with one of the biggest media houses in the Caribbean.

Related items

  • 'Windies must pounce quickly against England' - insists legend Lara 'Windies must pounce quickly against England' - insists legend Lara

    Brian Lara has urged West Indies to "pounce immediately" and rattle England early on in their three-Test series.

    The Windies great, formerly the all-time record run-scorer in Tests, believes his countrymen will struggle if matches go the full five-day distance.

    But he sees West Indies as having the players who can impose themselves on their hosts, with the behind-closed-doors series starting in Southampton on Wednesday.

    "They have to hit the road running and stamp their authority on England," Lara said in quotes published by the BBC.

    "I don't think they can last five days, so they have to take these games in four days. They have to establish a lead and keep it."

    Lara still holds the highest individual score in Tests - the 400 not out he scored against England in Antigua in 2004.

    He knows what it takes to pick apart an England bowling attack, and West Indies' 2-1 series victory over the same opponents last year suggests the current breed can also more than hold their own.

    Whether West Indies can be as competitive in English conditions as they were in the Caribbean remains to be seen.

    "They have to be able to pounce immediately," said Lara. "England are not beaten very easily at home and are overwhelming favourites."

    According to the 51-year-old Trinidadian, the tone for the series could be set on day one.

    Lara said: "If they play good cricket on the first day of the Test series, show they have the mettle to perform against England, that's the key."

  • Stokes will lead by example against West Indies – Sibley Stokes will lead by example against West Indies – Sibley

    Ben Stokes will lead by example when he captains England against West Indies, says Dom Sibley.

    With Joe Root absent from England's squad for the first Test in Southampton due to the birth of his second child, Stokes is to take charge for the opening game of the three-match series.

    Sibley looks set to open the batting alongside Rory Burns as England return to action after a lengthy coronavirus-enforced absence.

    "The boys are all raring to go. We've had the three-day warm-up which was good practice, we're all looking forward to getting out in the middle," said Sibley.

    "[Stokes] is just going to do what he does, lead from the front, lead by example.

    "His quality and energy on the pitch is a unique skill and presence. He'll just use that.

    "He's someone the young guys look up to and will continue to do that regardless of whether he's captain or not."

    Sibley scored his maiden Test 100 against South Africa in Cape Town in January and impressed on the tour, though he did not get chance to build on those displays prior to lockdown.

    However, the 24-year-old – who revealed he has lost 12 kilograms over the course of the break – acknowledged the rest has been helpful.

    "At the time I was raring to go and it's new for me to be playing for England, so I was buzzing to play every game," he added.

    "But you've got to try and take it as a positive and to have a break after such a long winter was nice. To sit back and work out what I needed to improve on to keep doing well at this level, further my game.

    "I'm trying to build on what I did in South Africa and hopefully contribute to a few wins. A few of us did quite well in South Africa, it feels like a lifetime ago but it's a case of trying to build on that and trying to score a few big scores in the series.

    "I've been working hard during lockdown, it was probably needed to be fair. Over the winter I was carrying too much weight. I'm glad I'm feeling a bit fitter."

    All of the upcoming matches will be played behind closed doors, though Sibley does not feel his game will be affected too drastically.

    "If I could have had a choice, it's always a dream to play a Test at Lord's or at your home ground in front of a packed house," he said.

    "Circumstances haven't allowed that to happen. I'd always choose to have a crowd in but maybe it might work to my advantage. It's not going to change how I play, I'm just going to do my thing."

  • Nemanja Matic: The post-shutdown form that rubber stamped a new Man Utd deal Nemanja Matic: The post-shutdown form that rubber stamped a new Man Utd deal

    Nemanja Matic earning a three-year contract extension to the widespread approval of the Old Trafford faithful would have seemed a fanciful state of affairs a year ago.

    Like most of a lumpen midfield assortment, Matic suffered during Jose Mourinho's tenure and seemed to represent a chunk of the deadwood Ole Gunnar Solskjaer would have to move on as part of his rebuilding process.

    The 31-year-old has looked a player transformed this season, already putting in some quality work alongside a rapidly developing Scott McTominay and a much-improved Fred.

    Bruno Fernandes' January arrival provided the club with a shot in the arm and Matic now finds himself as the classy enforcer in something approaching a fantasy midfield three alongside the Portugal star and a fit-again Paul Pogba.

    A new contract was firmly on the cards for the former Chelsea man before "Project Restart" launched and Opta data shows how some fine performances during this short period of time have sealed the deal.

    93.8 – Matic has completed almost 94 per cent of his passes in four appearances since the resumption, including an assist for Mason Greenwood during the 5-2 thrashing of Bournemouth. Compared to some of the other leading lights in his position in the Premier League, that places Matic alongside Liverpool's Fabinho (93.5 per cent), while he pulls up a little tidier than Chelsea's N'Golo Kante (90.2). Typically for a Manchester City holding midfielder, 96.1 per cent of Rodri's passes have found the target.

    77.8 – Matic's percentage success in duels is up considerably from 56.6 per cent this season before lockdown. The fact he has contested 18, compared to 35 for Fabinho (60 per cent won), 30 for Kante (50 per cent won) and 31 for Rodri (45.2 per cent won) hints towards the dominant nature of United's performances at present.

    37 – This season, Matic's displays have been shorn of the lethargy that afflicted him at times last term. He averages a tackle every 37 minutes, a slight increase in output from one every 40 before lockdown. That's comfortably more frequent than the famously all-action Kante (58 minutes per tackle) and Rodri (63.8 minutes per tackle)

    108 – Over the course of 16 appearances this season, Matic has recovered possession 108 times. His minutes-per-recovery figures have remained consistent, 11.2 and 11.8 either side of the break. McTominay has knocked his number down from 11.8 to 9.6 minutes per interception since June, while Fred has made one every 7.2 minutes – the Brazilian's two English summertime outings amounting to 86 minutes in total.

© 2020 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.