India, the West Indies and the ‘Other’ 1983 – Part 1

This year marks 40m The anniversary of the most romantic episode in Indian cricket history. On the 25thm June 1983 Kapil Dev stood on the terrace as Lord’s came in twilight and the Prudential World Cup over. Their opponents, the West Indies, were expected to cruise to a third consecutive world crown. Winning the inaugural tournament in 1975 and then following it up with another one for good measure in 1979, Clive Lloyd’s side crumbled in their relatively paltry chase of 184 and India clinched the final cricketing cup.

West Indies featured heavily in India’s 1983. Although India pulled off the century mark with their World Cup win over England in the summer, they were not so lucky a few months before their Caribbean tour when, true to form, the home team brushed aside. The visitors lead the five-Test series 2-0. Later West Indies toured India in what became known as “”.Revenge series” Beginning in October 1983 and ending on New Year’s Eve, the visitors demolished their hosts 3–0 in the 6-Test series and thrashed them 5–0 to complete a clean sweep in the limited-overs game.

This story, then, focuses on India, the West Indies and the ‘other’ 1983. A story of the most powerful units in the history of the game at home and abroad. As a result of their destruction in India that year, cricket writer Siddhant Patnaik described Lloyd’s team as “Unforgettable”. Nevertheless, in 1983 the West Indies board and the team itself faced the most controversial chapter in Caribbean cricket history.

In early 1983, before the start of the series with India, it was announced that a West Indies team “the rebel” South African breweries will follow in the footsteps of the supported England team and tour apartheid South Africa. Captained by Lawrence Rowe, and managed by Albert Padmore, the squad included Richard Austin, Herbert Chang, Sylvester Clarke, Colin Croft, Alvin Greenridge, Bernard Julien, Alvin Calicharan, Collis King, Everton Mattis, Ezra Moseley, David Murray, Derrick Parry. , Franklin Stephenson, Ray Winter and Emerson Trotman[DW(1] . Of these, only Croft, then 30 and increasingly injury-prone, Clarke, 28, Moseley, 24, and Stephenson, 23, can be said to be genuine contenders for a place in a full-strength West Indies squad.

Both Croft and Clarke played in the West Indies’ last Test series, the 1981/82 tour of Australia, although neither had played international cricket since January 1982, when Clive Lloyd’s side returned from Down Under. Clarke, frustrated by the lack of opportunities, Croft, unsure of the longevity of his wicked knee at the top level, and the rest of the team received a lucrative $100,000-150,000 for their services. An immediate ban followed, as did social and professional ostracism throughout the Caribbean.

Many of the visiting team, however, were players whose best days were at international level while most cited poor pay in the West Indies domestic game, as well as a lack of guaranteed employment in the off-season—or at best sporadic jobs. As their reason for jumping ship.

India came to the Caribbean fresh from a fight with Imran Khan and his Pakistan team. Losing a 6-Test rubber 3-0, and a limited-overs series 3-1, they were clearly second best on the tour to Pakistan. Imran’s pace, leadership and intelligence were brilliant throughout, though there were at least some bright spots for India.

Returning to the team for the Pakistan series after a three-year international break, Mahinder Amarnath scored 584 for 73 with three centuries and three fifties. Kapil Dev also bowled tirelessly as India’s spearhead. Change, however, was inevitable. After a lackluster series in Pakistan where he scored just 134 runs at 16.75 in 6 Tests, Gundappa Viswanath was dropped from the team, never to return. Expressed silky smoothness; Gavaskar’s sister-in-law considers herself surplus to requirements at the age of 34. For Gavaskar himself, the defeat in Pakistan meant more to him as he was sacked as captain and replaced by 24-year-old Haryana hurricane Kapil Dev. .

For the West Indies, despite the background noise caused by the rebel tour of South Africa, their XI for the first Test at Sabina Park represented just two changes from the last Test line-up in Adelaide fourteen months ago. For Croft, Malcolm Marshall arrived, then two months shy of his 25th birthdaym With birthdays and his peak years coming up. Fouad Bacchus is out in the middle order and Gus Logie comes in unchanged. The first Test began on 23 February at Sabina Park after a pre-Test series pipe-opener draw with Jamaica.

West Indies won by four wickets in a low scoring game. With Lloyd batting, India struggled to 251, made possible by a four-and-a-half-hour 63 from Yashpal Sharma and a brave 68 from young pacer Balwinder Sandhu. The West Indies did not find the conditions to their liking and finished on 254 all out, largely thanks to Greenies’ five-hour 70.

As India entered their second innings, an old rivalry erupted in electric style in front of the Sabina Park faithful. On the very first ball of the second innings, Michael Holding’s move towards the smooth stumps and the ungainly delivery of the ball picked up one of the pitch’s many vipers and bowled Gavaskar clean behind his leg stump. Anshuman Gaekwad and Mahinder Amarnath settled Indian nerves with a 68-run partnership, though the innings did not gain momentum as India were reduced to 174.

That old stager, Andy Roberts, at 32 and in what would be his last home series, took 5-39 in 24.3 overs. Set a target of 172 to win, and with no play possible on a rain-hit fourth day, Viv Richards’ 36-ball 61 in just 25.2 overs pushed the home side to the required runs on the final day, which Includes five 4s and four 6s.

The Test match between Port of Spain and Georgetown, Guyana was drawn. In 2n.d In the Test at Port of Spain, Clive Lloyd scored 143 for the West Indies in their 394, while Mahinder Amarnath scored a match-saving 117 in the Indian second innings to help his team avoid an innings defeat. Amarnath’s second innings century improved on his first innings of 58 runs and continued his excellent form. at Clive Lloyd’s home ground and a rain-lashed 3rd Gavaskar was notable for his only important innings of the Test tour at Georgetown; A perfectly made 147 out of India’s 284/3.

Normal West Indian service resumed in the fourth Test at Barbados where Lloyd won the toss and elected to field first. India were again bowled out for 209 with Amarnath – and alone – standing on 91 runs. Gus Logie top-scored with 130 in West Indies’ reply as the home side compiled 486. In a much-improved Indian second innings, Amarnath again top-scored, this time with 80, and Andy Roberts again took four wickets, this time for just 31 runs in 19.2 overs. West Indies’ lead was unassailable at two-nil after four Tests.

For the final Test at Antigua, West Indies again won the toss and Lloyd once again asked India to bat first. Ravi Shastri’s century at number six, Kapil Dev’s rapid fire 98, Vengsarkar’s 94 and again a run from Amarnath (only 54 on this occasion) meant India’s total was 457. In a slightly rejigged line-up for the final Test, Joel Garner was dropped, and Winston Davies was given his Test bow.

Windies replied with four of the seven centuries of the regular maximum, including Haynes 136, Dujon 110 and Lloyd 106. It was the circumstances surrounding Gordon Greenidge’s 154 that understandably attracted the most attention. Overcoming unimaginable emotional agony, the great opener retired with 154 runs to visit his dying daughter Rhea in the hospital. An exception was made to the laws of cricket as a mark of respect as Bajan was classified as a “retired not out”. The West Indies won the series 2-0 at the end of hostilities in Antigua, with bad weather having a significant say in the three drawn Test matches, as indeed Indian restlessness.

For India, Mahinder Amarnath stood head and shoulders above his teammates as his 598 Test runs came at 66.44. Kapil Dev weighed in with 254 at 42.33, while Shastri, Yashpal Sharma and Vengsarkar all contributed sporadically. With the ball the tourists relied heavily on their captain, whose 17 wickets at 24.94 proved beyond doubt that he was the only capable performer who could threaten the West Indies’ top order.

Another Indian national icon had an undeniably poor time of things. Although Sunil Gavaskar scored 147 at Georgetown, he managed to score another 93 in his other 8 Test innings. Questions were asked about his appetite for short and quick stuff and his ability to weather the inevitable onslaught from the pace battery and stay at the top of the order. When the West Indies toured India in 1983, he turned the round in such thrilling attacking fashion that it was a great chapter in Gavaskar’s story. By early 1983, however, it was somewhat off and the world’s premier opening batsman was thought to have lost his form in the first half of the year.

For the West Indies, it was a successful and reassuring return to the international arena after a fourteen-month hiatus, where the rise of the rebel tour was relegated to a side show – at least when Clive Lloyd’s team was off the field. . Beyond that, the reaction to South Africa’s visit will have clear ramifications across the region for years to come.

The impression on the field was of a slick smooth and powerful machine coming back to life, slowly shifting through the gears to achieve maximum efficiency. All batsmen scored centuries in the series, although some cashed in more than others. Greenidge topped with an average of 393 at 78.60, while Lloyd top-scored with 407 at 67.83. Furthermore, Haynes and Dujon both averaged over 50. That old warhorse AME Roberts topped the bowling with 24 wickets at 22.70 and Marshall seamlessly replaced Croft with 21 wickets at 23.57. Those other two mature operators, Holding and Garner, looked less efficient on paper, but ultimately their magnitudes would increase optimal performance.

With the series ending on May 3, the next stops for both teams are England and the Prudential World Cup, starting on June 9. They meet again at the World Cup in unforgettable and improbable fashion in the group stages at Old Trafford and The Oval and then in the final at Lord’s on June 25. Of the two teams packing their kit bags and heading to the World Cup in the Caribbean, one was a heavy favorite to claim their third straight title, while the other was 66-1 outsiders. Reality, circumstance and romance, however, have a strange habit of upsetting the bookies.

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