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Thread: Classic down memory lane : History of cricket

  1. #76
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    The Yuvi-Kaif show
    India's second great Lord's heist

    2002
    Nineteen years on from their greatest triumph - the humbling of West Indies in the 1983 World Cup final - India returned to Lord's for another, no less astonishing, victory. This time, against England in the final of the NatWest Series, India did not start the match as rank outsiders, although the prospect of a tenth consecutive one-day final defeat weighed heavily on the players' minds. And at 146 for 5 chasing 326 for victory, with Sourav Ganguly, Sachin Tendulkar and Rahul Dravid all back in the pavilion, the contest was as good as over. But nobody, it seemed, had bothered to inform Mohammad Kaif and Yuvraj Singh (combined age 41). The pair added 121 in 106 balls to haul India back into contention, before Kaif sealed a two-wicket win with three balls to spare.

    1876
    Bill Roe set the record for the highest individual innings when he made 415 for Emmanuel College against Caius College in Cambridge. Roe batted for five and a half hours, ran 705 runs and did not give a chance until past his second century. At the close, he complained to the scorer that he made his tally 416... whoever was right, it was better than when he played the day before.

    1953
    An unsung hero is born. Of the big shots in West Indies' heavyweight 1980s side, Hilary Angelo Gomes (you can see why he was called "Larry") was the one most likely to escape the autograph hunters. But he added a crucial element of sobriety to the batting line-up, and was a watertight presence at No. 3 or 4. Packer gave him the chance to break into the Test team, and he took it with two centuries against Australia in 1977-78. Indeed six of Gomes' nine Test hundreds came against the Aussies - in Australia he averaged 70 - none better than a diligent 127 on a Perth flyer in 1984-85. That was the third of four centuries in eight Tests in 1984, two of them in England. His average hovered tantalisingly above 40 until his last Test appearance, against New Zealand in Christchurch in 1986-87, when scores of 8 and 33 dropped it just below. This all looked very unlikely during an early three-year spell at Middlesex, when Gomes failed to make a century.

    1979
    From a prosaic left-hander to a stereotypical one. Just over a year after his Test debut, David Gower carved a regal unbeaten 200 against India at Edgbaston. Already he was building a reputation for himself - the Wisden Almanack said he was "less aggressive than usual" - but his double-hundred still came off only 279 balls, as England careered to 633 for 5.

    1954
    Birth of one of the last orthodox slow left-armers to play a Test for Australia. The Victorian Ray Bright's last series was in India in 1986-87 - he took 5 for 94 in the second innings of the tied Test in Madras - and he had the misfortune to ply his trade during Australia's nadir in the 1980s. The Aussies won only two of Bright's 25 Tests, and in Australia he averaged 68.

    1945
    A more productive Australian spinner is born. Ashley Mallett was the best Australian offspinner of the 20th century, in terms of output. He took 132 wickets from 38 Tests, 74 of them in victories. All of his six five-fors came in his first 13 Tests. The last of them, 8 for 59 against Pakistan in Adelaide in 1972-73, remain the best figures by a finger-spinner in a Test in Australia. Mallett later became a journalist, and wrote biographies of Victor Trumper and Clarrie Grimmett.

    2009
    A prophecy comes true. With Pakistan in a desperate situation on day one of the Test in Colombo, Younis Khan taped a note on a ball that read something like "Fawad Alam will score a hundred." Fawad got out for 16 and Pakistan for 90, so Younis put the ball away. But the next day a fightback was launched. First, Umar Gul and Saeed Ajmal took four each to bowl Sri Lanka out for 240. Then Fawad did as his captain had predicted and helped his side wipe off the first-innings deficit on his way to becoming the first Pakistan batsman to score a century on overseas debut. But while Fawad went on to make 168, and Younis 82, the rest of the batting order collapsed spectacularly - at lunch on day three, they were 294 for 2; by tea, Sri Lanka were 41 runs into their chase of 171 (which they completed the same day). Sri Lanka won the series 2-0.

    1974
    For a side that has won the World Cup twice, India were actually quite slow to join cricket's pyjama party. On this day at Headingley they played their first one-day international, the last of the (then) six Test-playing nations to do so. They put up a decent fight, equalling the then-highest innings total (265) before John Edrich (90 off 97 balls) and Tony Greig (40 off 28) thumped England to a four-wicket victory.

    1944
    Birth of the hearty South Australian seamer Eric Freeman. He played 11 Tests between 1967-68 and 1969-70, peaking with 4 for 52 against West Indies on his home ground in Adelaide in 1968-69. He was dropped for good after Australia's humbling in South Africa a year later.

    1984
    Francois du Plessis, or Faf, born today, was called up to the national side after a stunning domestic season in South Africa in 2010-11, when he topped the limited-overs run charts with 567 runs from ten matches. He made his ODI debut in the home series against India in 2010-11 and played in the World Cup soon after. But it was in Test cricket that du Plessis made his name, as a batsman who could hunker down under pressure: on debut in Adelaide in 2012, he batted over 11 hours (across two innings) and scored a century at No. 7 to save the Test; in the next match in Perth, his 78 prevented a collapse in the first innings and South Africa went on to win the Test and the series. In 2013 he was appointed South Africa's T20 captain. In the Johannesburg Test in December that year, he gave India a terrible fright by batting six and a half hours for his hundred and nearly pulling off a chase of 458. But when South Africa toured India in 2015-16, du Plessis managed only 60 runs from seven innings. He top-scored for his side in the 2015 World Cup semi-final against New Zealand, but ended up on the losing side.


    ? ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
    Last edited by UpdateA1; 23-08-2017 at 02:44 PM.

  2. #77
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    Exclamation July 14

    July 14 down the years

    England edge a thriller
    The Ashes get off to a screamer
    James Anderson got the final wicket of Brad Haddin, thanks to DRS

    2013
    The end of a nail-biting Ashes Test at Trent Bridge. Chasing 311, Australia were tottering at 231 for 9 when James Pattinson joined Brad Haddin to defy England's bowlers. The two shared a thrilling 65-run stand before James Anderson's tenth wicket of the match - an thin edge to the keeper that was denied by the on-field umpire and overturned after a DRS review - helped England win by 14 runs. Earlier in the game, 19-year-old Ashton Agar had made a swashbuckling 98 on debut in the first innings - the highest score by a No. 11 in Tests.

    1984
    At Headingley, the beginning of a swift and famous one-handed demolition job. With his left thumb in plaster, and having been advised not to play cricket for ten days, Malcolm Marshall came in at No. 11 to shepherd Larry Gomes to a century - he even swished one to third man for four - and then shattered England's second innings. Marshall took 7 for 53, operating off a shorter run-up, as England subsided from 104 for 2 to 159 all out. Wisden Cricket Monthly described his performance as: "Fairytale or nightmare, take your choice." For England, the nightmare was just beginning - they were two Tests away from being blackwashed for the first time
    .
    1967
    A nuggety left-hander is born. Hashan Tillakaratne's career at the highest level looked to be over until he was recalled to the Sri Lankan side in 2001-02. Then came the purplest of patches. In five Tests against India, Bangladesh and West Indies, he made 549 runs and was dismissed only once. An accumulator who acted as a complement to the likes of Aravinda de Silva and Mahela Jayawardene, Tillakaratne could be very hard to shift when set - almost a fifth of his Test innings were not out. He was surprisingly handed the captaincy of the Test side after Sanath Jayasuriya stepped down, but his ten-match tenure produced just one win, and his leadership style was criticised for being too defensive. Following a 0-3 series whitewash against Australia he stepped down in March 2004; he wasn't picked for the subsequent tour of Zimbabwe.

    1976
    Birth of the first Papua New Guinean-born Welshman to keep wicket for England. Geraint Jones learnt his game while training as a pharmacist in Australia, and didn't come to the attention of the England selectors until he had turned 27. But with England still floundering for a successor to the stalwart Alec Stewart, Jones' breezy counterattacking style ticked all the right boxes with the coach, Duncan Fletcher, who backed him through thick and often thin from the moment he made his debut in Antigua in April 2004. His reward was the tumbling catch that sealed a famous two-run win at Edgbaston in August 2005, which ignited the greatest Ashes series of them all.

    1933
    The slowest torture for Essex in Leyton, as Yorkshire's Hedley Verity skittled them for 104 and 64 - in the same day. Verity took 8 for 47 and 9 for 44, and even though he took 15 wickets five times in his career, he never bettered his 17 for 91 here. The only man to reach 20 for Essex was Dudley Pope. He made 34 in the first innings - and was run out.

    1947
    A remarkable day in Leicester, where 633 runs were scored on the second day of Leicestershire's game against Middlesex. Middlesex captain Bill Edrich led the way with a career-best 257, Denis Compton chipped in with 151 - the pair adding 277 in 131 minutes - as Middlesex declared on 637 for 4. Leicestershire closed on 130 for 2. Middlesex won the match with four minutes to spare, smacking 66 in 21 minutes.

    2008
    Ian Bell became the seventh batsman to be dismissed for 199 on this day. And to make things worse, despite his mammoth score, England couldn't win this Lord's Test against South Africa. After declaring at 593 for 8 (Kevin Pietersen got 152 and Stuart Broad 76 from No. 8), England bowled South Africa out for 247. Ashwell Prince, who got a hundred, was the only batsman to score over 42. South Africa fought back somewhat more tenaciously in their follow-on, though. Graeme Smith, Neil McKenzie and Hashim Amla made hundreds to save the game. They won the next two Tests to take the series 2-1.

    1937
    Birth of a teenage one-cap wonder. Khalid Hasan was only 16 years 352 days old when he lined up for Pakistan against England at Trent Bridge in 1954. Four days later his Test career was over, after 17 runs, 2 for 116, and an innings defeat. One of his wickets was Denis Compton - bowled for 278. In all, Hasan played only 17 first-class matches, the last of them at the age of 21.

    1957
    A two-Test wonder is born. New Zealand batsman Peter Webb didn't have the best career - 11 runs (off 86 balls) at an average of 3.66 - but he picked a decent pair of Tests to appear in. In Dunedin in 1979-80, the Kiwis beat West Indies by one wicket, and in an ill-tempered second Test in Christchurch, Colin Croft had an infamous run-in with the umpire Fred Goodall. Webb was dropped for the last Test, but New Zealand drew the match and took the series. They were the last side to beat West Indies for 15 years.

    1873
    An all-run 10. Lancashire's Albert "Monkey" Hornby made 20 of his side's total of 100 against Surrey at The Oval - and half of his runs came in one fell swoop.

    Other birthdays
    1863 Arthur Coningham (Australia)
    1964 Lee-Ann Hunter (Australia)
    1965 James Sutherland (Australia)
    1972 Claudine van de Kieft (Netherlands)
    1982 Ranjan Das (Bangladesh)

    ? ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

  3. #78
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    Arrow July 15

    July 15 down the years

    Fagg's unique double-hundreds
    Two doubles in a first-class match
    Arthur Fagg also played five Tests for England

    1938
    Kent's 23-year-old Arthur Fagg became the only man in history to score two double-centuries in a first-class match when he cracked 202 not out in two hours and 50 minutes against Essex in Colchester. He had already made a five-hour 244 on the first day, including a century before lunch. Less than 18 months earlier Fagg had returned early from the tour of Australia on a stretcher after contracting rheumatic fever, and subsequently missed the entire 1937 summer.

    1995
    An innings of spellbinding brilliance from Aravinda de Silva. Even though Kent were always behind the eight ball in the Benson & Hedges Cup final against Lancashire - they eventually lost by 35 runs - de Silva laced 112 off just 95 balls, including three sixes and 11 fours. It was a real I-was-there innings. He was the first man on a losing side to win the Gold Award in a B&H final, and the purity of his performance almost brought a tear to the eye.

    1977
    A muscular, bludgeoning fast bowler is born. Andre Nel had belied his conservative Afrikaans upbringing by amassing one of South African cricket's most chequered disciplinary records. His early career was blighted by a string of misdemeanours and it was during the home West Indies series in 2003-04, during which he got married, that he established himself as a permanent member of the Test team. He came into his own during the tour of Australia in 2005, where he was an intimidating presence with 14 wickets and an attacking mindset. But with South Africa settling on a young pace-bowling attack, led by Dale Steyn, opportunities were increasingly limited and Nel announced his international retirement in March 2009.

    1950
    Birth of the strapping Victorian fast bowler Alan Hurst, whose injury problems looked set to sentence him to one-cap-wonder status - until he made a successful return in the late 1970s. Hurst made his debut in 1973-74, against New Zealand in Adelaide, but was dropped after a modest performance. Four years later he returned to a Packer-gutted side, and he had a storming 1978-79 season. In six Ashes Tests he grabbed 25 wickets, even though a depleted Australia were hammered 1-5, and then blew Pakistan away with nine wickets in Perth.

    1977
    Birth of another Victorian who is a first-class accumulator and a T20 specialist. David Hussey, like his older brother Michael, had to score a mountain of runs on the domestic circuit before the selectors took notice. He made his T20 debut in early 2008 and was a surprise pick in that year's IPL auction - bought by Kolkata for US$625,000, much more than his brother or Ricky Ponting fetched. He started his one-day career with three half-centuries in five innings but struck a lean patch in 2009 before getting his first hundred, against Scotland.

    1939
    A modest return for Pakistani offspinner Haseeb Ahsan, who was born today. In 12 Tests he took 27 wickets at an average close to 50. His best figures came in Madras in 1960-61, when India piled up 539 and Ahsan took 84-19-202-6. He never bowled in a Test in England for fear that he would be no-balled for throwing, and was actually called against India in the first Test in Bombay in 1960-61. Ahsan returned to England as Pakistan's tour manager in 1987 and was also one of the most influential selectors in Pakistan. Ahsan died at the age of 73 in Karachi.

    1850
    A great day for Wisden - John Wisden, who bowled all ten batsmen in the second innings of the match between North and South at Lord's. It's the only instance of an all-bowled ten-for in a first-class match. In all, 30 wickets fell... and 25 of them were bowled. Of the other five, three were run out.

    1856
    South Africa's first captain is born. Owen Dunell's two Tests were South Africa's first two as well, against England in 1888-89. He was captain in Port Elizabeth but played only as a batsman in the match that followed, in Cape Town. He died in France in 1929.

    1989
    The last ball of a Benson & Hedges final, and Nottinghamshire needed four runs to beat Essex. Two 40-year-olds were in the thick of things: John Lever speared the final ball towards Eddie Hemmings' leg stump, but Hemmings managed to squeeze it square on the off side up the hill at Lord's for the winning boundary. A memorable three-wicket victory - and catharsis too: Notts had lost a famous NatWest Trophy final to Essex off the last ball four years earlier.

    1901
    The birth of a great cricket writer. Raymond Robertson-Glasgow, nicknamed "Crusoe", was a fast bowler for Oxford University and Somerset - in a career spanning 15 years - but he is most remembered for his writings on the game. He became a cricket correspondent in 1933 (for the Morning Post) and later wrote for the Daily Telegraph, the Observer, and the Sunday Times. He also authored many books, all of which were infused with an infallible sense of humour.

    1984
    An Afghanistan captain is born. Nawroz Mangal took over the captaincy in 2007 and was in charge when the team became the first Affiliate nation to gain ODI status at the 2009 World Cup Qualifiers, and when they qualified for the 2010 World T20. A right-hand middle-order batsman, Mangal scored his first ODI century in 2013, against Scotland in Sharjah. He handed the captaincy to Mohammad Nabi in 2010, before it was given back to him. He gave up the job again in 2013, to focus on his batting.


    Other birthdays
    1909 John Cochran (South Africa)
    1955 Sunil Jayasinghe (Sri Lanka)
    1956 Harold Joseph (West Indies)
    1960 Gary Robertson (New Zealand)
    1976 Dinuka Hettiarachchi (Sri Lanka)
    1977 Caitriona Beggs (Ireland)

    ? ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

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    Cool July 16

    July 16 down the years

    The real deal
    Jack of all trades

    Shaun Pollock was the first South African to 400 Test wickets

    1973
    When he was captain, nobody in world cricket had as much on his plate as Shaun Pollock, who was born today. Captain, premier strike bowler, lower middle-order counterattacker, and possessor of one of cricket's more ginger tops, Pollock, son of Peter Pollock and nephew of Graeme, was the real deal from the moment he came in against England in 1995-96 and cracked 66 and took 4 for 34 on his one-day international debut, in Cape Town. A masterful wicket-to-wicket bowler, his average, when he passed the milestone, was the lowest of the 41 men to have taken 200 Test wickets. It was fitting, then, that he was the first South African to take 400 wickets. But his captaincy stint was far from memorable. South Africa suffered a first-round exit in their home World Cup after he miscalculated the D/L score required for them to beat West Indies - that was his final game as captain. He played his fourth World Cup in 2007 but was noticeably slower, and he retired from the game the following year.

    1910
    Stan McCabe, who was born today, loved mixing it with the fast bowlers, and in the first match of the 1932-33 Bodyline series, he walloped 187 not out in the first innings. No other Aussie managed even a half-century. McCabe was a batsman of the highest class, a brilliant hooker in particular. At Trent Bridge in 1938, he saved the match with a blistering 232 so good that it had even Don Bradman drooling. When McCabe returned to the dressing room, the Don said simply: "If I could play an innings like that, I'd be a proud man, Stan." McCabe died in Sydney in 1969

    1895
    At Taunton, Archie MacLaren completed a mighty 424 for Lancashire against Somerset, the highest score in first-class history at the time. It remained the highest in first-class cricket in England for 99 years... until Brian Lara shattered that, and a few other records besides, in 1994.

    1927
    An MCC president is born. John Warr would rather be remembered for that than his Test bowling average - it was 281. And his strike rate was a wicket every 584 balls - or 97 overs. Both were the worst in Test history until Sri Lankan left-arm spinner Roger Wijesuriya kindly plumbed new depths. In Warr's defence, he was still a Cambridge undergraduate when he was picked for those Tests, in Australia in 1950-51. Warr later captained Middlesex - cue the famous Brian Johnston joke: "Warr's declared", whereupon an old woman in the crowd wakes up and enquires, "Who against?"

    1983
    Against New Zealand at The Oval, Graeme Fowler and Chris Tavar? became the first England openers to score a century in the same Test innings for 23 years. And - shock, horror - Tavar?'s was the quicker: his 109 came off 259 balls, Fowler's 105 off 299. Mind you, it was Fowler's maiden Test hundred, so you can understand his watchfulness. Allan Lamb cracked 102 not out as well, as England eased home by 189 runs.
    Other birthdays

    1920 Anwar Hussain (Pakistan)
    1926 Hazel Sanders (England)
    1936 Venkataraman Subramanya (India)
    1976 Dale Richards (West Indies)
    1977 Sune van Zyl (South Africa)

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    Lightbulb July 17

    July 17 down the years

    Perfection in gauntlets

    Bob Taylor managed 57 Tests for England

    1941
    One of England's most accomplished wicketkeepers is born. It was Bob Taylor's misfortune that he was around at the same time as Alan Knott, and in an era when wicketkeepers were expected to deliver with the bat for the first time. Taylor couldn't - he made only three fifties in 57 Tests - but he could certainly keep. His glovework was near perfect at times, and nobody in history can match his 1649 dismissals (1473 caught, 176 stumped), most of them in a 28-year career with Derbyshire. Ten of those catches came in Bombay in the Golden Jubilee Test of 1979-80, when Taylor stole a bit of the limelight from Ian Botham. Taylor's last Test was in Pakistan in 1983-84, but two years later, against New Zealand at Lord's in 1986, he took over the gloves from the injured Bruce French. He was only at the match as a media relations officer for Cornhill Insurance, the sponsors.

    2016
    At Lord's, where six years ago they were crushed by the spot-fixing revelations, Pakistan lifted everyone's spirits with an emotional 75-run win over England, following which they trotted out a bespoke celebration routine, in which the team did push-ups on the turf. Their 42-year-old captain, Misbah-ul-Haq scored a century in his first Test in England, and legspinner Yasir Shah took ten wickets in the low-scoring thriller. On day four, England were set 283 and then bowled out for 207. Fast bowler Mohammad Amir, who went to prison for his role in the 2010 scandal, took three wickets on his return to the scene of his crime.

    1944
    The New Zealand batsman Mark Burgess, who was born today, made five hundreds in his 50 Tests, and three of them came in consecutive Tests. It looks like the ultimate purple patch - except those three Tests were spread over two years. Burgess was only on a winning side five times, but one of those was when he was captain for the first time - the Wellington demolition of 1977-78, where New Zealand beat England for the first time in 42 attempts and 48 years.

    1975
    Birth of another New Zealander. The temperamental Andre Adams only played one Test, but in his 42 one-day internationals showed enough potential to indicate a successful international career - even if his credentials as a big hitter didn't stack up. A handy bowling allrounder, Adams came back from an injury to play in 2004 and featured off and on for the ODI side, but in late 2007 he said he was not willing to play any more ODIs under the administration of the time. A perceived casual attitude, injuries and inconsistent performances perhaps had its effect on New Zealand's selectors. Adams then joined the unofficial Indian Cricket League, all but ending his international career.

    1888
    A record 27 wickets fell in a little over four hours on the second day of the Lord's Test between England and Australia. Heavy rain and an uncovered pitch created a batsman's nightmare. On the first day, 13 wickets fell in three hours, and on the second, England lost their last seven wickets for 35, bowled out Australia for 60, and were again dismissed for 62, losing by 61 runs.

    1960
    Birth of the man who once had the highest batting average in one-day internationals. Kim Barnett did only play one game, when he carved 84 against Sri Lanka at The Oval in 1988, but it was enough to put him top of the tree. A few weeks before that, he hit 66 on his Test debut, against Sri Lanka at Lord's, and then thumped a merry 80 in England's next Test, against Australia at Headingley a year later. But Barnett's on-the-walk technique was soon found out, and after being dropped he went on the rebel tour to South Africa in 1989-90. That was his international career done, but he ploughed on as county cricket's elder statesman for another 13 years, mostly with Derbyshire but later with Gloucestershire, until his retirement in 2002.

    1893
    Against Australia at Lord's, England's Arthur Shrewsbury became the first man to make 1000 runs in Tests when he hammered 106 in the first innings.

    1919
    With a bowling average in excess of 50, New Zealand legspinner Alex Moir, who was born today, didn't exactly have a Boy's Own Test career. That was after something of a dream start, when he took 6 for 155 against England in Christchurch in 1950-51. But overall, New Zealand lost 12 and won none of Moir's 17 Tests.

    1933
    In Rhodesia, a South African batsman is born. Tony Pithey's 17-Test career had one distinct highlight: a patient 154 against England in Cape Town in 1964-65. It was his only Test hundred. His brother David also played eight Tests for South Africa.

    1982
    Birth of Omari Banks, the first player from the Leeward island of Anguilla to play Test cricket for West Indies. His debut was inauspicious, to say the least. He took three wickets in the first innings against Australia in Barbados in 2003, but was hit for 204 runs in 40 overs - then the most runs conceded in an innings by a debutant. He played only nine more Tests, the highlight of which was an unbeaten 47 in West Indies' famous chase of 418 in Antigua, in the same series.

    Other birthdays
    1955 Christopher Chappell (Canada)
    1962 Debra Stock (England)
    1977 Inoka Galagedara (Sri Lanka)

    ? ESPN Sports Media

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    Cool July 18

    July 18 down the years

    The most famous beard in sports
    The good doctor makes an entrance
    WG Grace scored over 54,000 first-class runs

    1848
    WG Grace - better known as "The Doctor", "The Champion" or just "WG" - was a pioneer of the game. Born this day, he was a magnificent allrounder: a dashing batsman, a cunning, round-arm slow-medium bowler, and owner of the most famous beard in sport. Grace was a walking first: first two triple-centuries in first-class cricket, in 1876; first to make 2000 first-class runs in a season (2739 in 1871); first to 1000 runs in May (1895); first (and probably only) man to replace the bails after being bowled and carry on his innings; first to 50,000 first-class runs; first to 100 hundreds; first Test century in England; and first Englishman to make a century on debut. Those last two were at The Oval in 1880, when he slammed 152 against Australia. His other Test century came against the Aussies at The Oval too, 170 in 1886. Grace captained England in the last 13 of his 22 Tests. He also made 400 for United South against Grimsby on the day his second child was born. He died in 1915, after suffering a heart attack during an air raid in Kent. He died at his home in Mottingham, Kent, and he was buried three days later at Elmers End Cemetery.

    1949
    Dennis Keith Lillee is born. After recovering from back problems so bad that many expected him not to play again, he became one of the greatest bowlers in history, with a magnificently athletic action and an attitude Dirty Harry would have approved of. Lillee loved to get rough - he had an unedifying standoff with Javed Miandad in Perth in 1981-82 after aiming a kick at Miandad. He and Jeff Thomson were the nastiest pair of gangsters ever to take the new ball, and they left horses' heads in many an English bed during a torrid Ashes series in 1974-75. Lillee was an example to all bowlers of how to cope with advancing years. For him there was no midlife crisis; after Packer, he simply substituted craft for pace, brain for brawn, and offered batsmen a different but every bit as fearsome examination. Oddly he took more Test ten-fors (seven) than he did wickets outside England and Australasia (6). Lillee could bat too - he rolled up his sleeves and almost saw Australia over the line at Headingley in 1981, when he and Rod Marsh infamously bet on England at 500-1 - although his attempt to use an aluminium bat in another Test, also against England, wasn't his brightest idea. He was the leading Test wicket-taker when he retired, with 355.

    1896
    An unbeaten hundred on debut for Ranjitsinhji. But it came in a losing cause for England, in an Ashes Test at Old Trafford. England followed on to Australia's 412 (Tom Richardson took seven) and Ranji followed up his first-innings 62 with a sparkling unbeaten 154 in 185 minutes. But the rest of the side jointly managed just 151, leaving Australia a target of 125. Richardson took 6 for 76 but Australia won by three wickets. This was also the game in which Australian allrounder George Giffen became the first player to reach the double of 1000 runs and 100 wickets.

    1972
    Only ten men have ever scored a hundred and taken a hat-trick in a first-class match, and Mike Procter is the only man to have to done it twice. He did it for the first time on this day, taking 8 for 73 in the match and cracking 51 and 102 for Gloucestershire against Essex at Westcliff-on-Sea. It was an all-lbw hat-trick, too, and all from around the wicket.

    2003
    A northern outpost of Australia gets its first Test. Darwin became Australia's eighth Test venue when it hosted Bangladesh in a match that lasted three days. Bangladesh were bowled out for 97, after which Australia vandalised their bowling attack - Darren Lehmann and Steve Waugh making hundreds - for 407. The visitors eventually lost by an innings and 132 runs.

    1893
    It's a slightly odd stat that only five men have ever made a century at Lord's on their Test debut: Matt Prior, Andrew Strauss, Sourav Ganguly, John Hampshire... and Harry Graham, who did so for Australia on this day. Having come to the crease at 75 for 5, "The Little Dasher" cracked 107 to help Australia to a draw. He was also the only Australian to make a century on Test debut in England until Dirk Wellham in 1981.

    1927
    Chris Harris' dad is born. Zin Harris, a right-hander, unlike his son, played nine Tests over a period of nine years, making his only century against South Africa in Cape Town in 1961-62. He died in his native Christchurch in December 1991, a few months before his son starred in the World Cup.

    1988
    The birth of a man who secured his place in cricket lore with four lusty blows on one of the biggest stages. Carlos Brathwaite was on strike when West Indies needed 19 runs off the last over to win the 2016 World T20 against England. Four monstrous sixes later, he had sealed the deal with two balls to spare. An attacking allrounder from Barbados, Brathwaite made his international debut in 2011, but it was only with his second coming, in 2015, that he was able to nail down a regular place in the West Indies set-up.

    Other birthdays
    1873 Albert Powell (South Africa)
    1913 Hilda Hills (Australia)
    1925 Hubert Doggart (England)
    1954 Imtiaz Ali (West Indies)

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    Arrow Glen Chappel hits 100 off 21 minutes (27 balls) july 19

    July 19 down the years

    A rare old day
    Fred tucks into India... again
    Fred Trueman sent India crashing to 58

    1952
    A young and very fiery Fred Trueman continued his personal assault on India's batsmen. Trueman had grabbed 15 wickets in his first two Tests, and this time added a further 8 for 31 in the first innings at Old Trafford as India crumbled to 58 all out. Tony Lock, making his debut, started the rot with a stunning catch at short leg to remove Vinoo Mankad, the first time Lock had touched the ball in Test cricket. He was then instrumental in bowling India out for 82 in the second innings, taking 4 for 36 in 9.3 overs, as 22 wickets fell in the day.

    2003
    The birth of a phenomenon. The Twenty20 Cup was seen as a gimmick when it burst onto the English domestic scene in the summer of 2003. Bouncy castles, face-painting and speed-dating were some of the sideshows required to goad the punters through the county turnstiles, but for the first finals day at Trent Bridge, it was the cricket that reclaimed centre stage. Not even the appearance of the pop trio Atomic Kitten could distract from the totality of Surrey's victory. Adam Hollioake's men saw off Gloucestershire in the semis and Warwickshire in the final, and cricket, arguably, has never quite been the same since

    2015
    Australia record their third-biggest win in Ashes history, in terms of runs. They had come into the Lord's Test surrounded by doubt, having been thumped in the first Test, in Cardiff. Here they made the most of winning the toss on a rather lifeless pitch, piling up 566 for 8 (Steven Smith made a double, and Chris Rogers nearly did too). Then their quick bowlers reduced the hosts to 30 for 4. England did not really recover, and that they were mentally beaten too showed in the second innings, when they folded meekly for 103.

    1993
    The last day of first-class cricket for Ian Botham. Halfway through Durham's tour match against the Australians, Beefy announced that it would be his last. After terrorising them on and off the field for 15 years, it wouldn't have been right if he'd bowed out against anyone else. He made 32 and went wicketless, but Botham had another way of stealing the limelight: he kept wicket for the last over of the match without gloves or pads.

    1993
    While Botham was finishing up, Glen Chapple was flaying a century in 21 minutes and 27 balls - the fastest in first-class history. But you won't see it any record books. Chapple's hundred came against joke bowlers, Tony Cottey (6-0-121-0) and Matthew Maynard (6-0-110-1).

    1955
    Birth of the first Anglo-Indian to play for India. And fittingly, Roger Binny was at his best in English conditions. A steady medium-pacer and a capable batsman who opened in India's Golden Jubilee Test, Binny made little impact in his first four years of international cricket. But his career took off when he was selected for the World Cup in 1983. He saved India from elimination with a match-winning display against Australia in Chelmsford, and conceded just 23 runs from ten overs to help India to a stunning victory over West Indies in the final. Three years later Binny was instrumental in England's Test series defeat, taking 5 for 40 in India's victory at Headingley.

    1979
    An injury-plagued fast bowler is born. When Dilhara Fernando burst onto the international scene, young and raw, he inspired hope that he would be the long-term replacement for Chaminda Vaas as the cutting edge of Sri Lanka's pace attack, but two stress fractures in 2004 hampered his career. Fernando has a well-disguised slower ball and can reverse swing it as well. One of his finest performances was when he took 6 for 27 to skittle England out for 104 in an ODI at the Premadasa Stadium in 2007. He was recalled in 2016 to the T20 squad four years after his last international match for Sri Lanka.

    1982
    England beat Pakistan by 73 runs in a one-day international to win the series 2-0. Mike Gatting top-scored with 76 and Ian Botham hit four sixes off Iqbal Qasim.

    1877
    Birth of fast bowler Arthur Fielder, who played six Tests for England, all against Australia. He took a heroic 6 for 82 (nine wickets in the match) in the narrow defeat in Sydney in 1907-08. In 1906, he became the only person to take all ten wickets in an innings for Players against Gentlemen at Lord's.

    1876
    John Gunn was born, another whose six Tests were all against Australia. A hard-working allrounder, he bowled 42 overs in taking 5 for 76 in Adelaide in 1901-02. His uncle William and brother George also played for England.

    1899
    No Ashes cricket whatsoever was played on July 19 in the entire 20th century. Before 2001, you have to rewind 102 years to Old Trafford, and the final day of a three-day draw. Earlier in the match, Tom Hayward top-scored with 130, Bill Bradley took a wicket with his first ball in Test cricket, and Australia's Monty Noble became the only batsman to score two Test fifties on the same day.

    1920
    Robert Christiani, who was born on this day, had the misfortune of playing in the West Indies middle order at the same time as the three Ws. It is said that he was a far better batsman than his average of 26.35 in 22 Tests reveals. He was lbw on 99 in his first Test in Barbados. He was picked for the India tour in 1948-49 and became the first batsman from Guyana to score a century when, batting at No. 8, he made 107 in West Indies total of 631 in Delhi. He was a genuine allrounder who fielded well, bowled offspin and kept wicket. He also represented British Guiana as a hockey forward and football goalkeeper.

    Other birthdays
    1899 John Nicolson (South Africa)
    1959 Shubhangi Kulkarni (India)
    1977 Ed Smith (England)
    1981 David Bernard (West Indies)

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    Default July 20

    July 20 down the years
    Botham's
    Beefy turns it on

    1981
    The most amazing day of a famously amazing Headingley Test. Ian Botham scored 145 of his 149 not out to give England an outside chance of beating Australia after following on, a chance Bob Willis took with his 8 for 43 the following day. This was also the day when England's odds slipped out to 500-1, an offer that Dennis Lillee and Rod Marsh couldn't refuse. Then Botham and Graham Dilley gave it some humpty, and the rest is history.

    1900
    Birth of that famously combative Yorkshireman Maurice Leyland, who saved the best till last. His final Test innings of 187 was played during a partnership of 382 with Len Hutton at The Oval in 1938, still England's highest stand for any wicket against Australia.

    2009
    England win an Ashes Test at Lord's after 75 years. And who did they have to thank for it? Andrew Flintoff, of course. Having announced that he would retire at the end of the series, Flintoff had looked feeble till the fourth innings. Australia were set 522 (Andrew Strauss had made 161 earlier) and Flintoff came on to steal the show with his second five-for against Australia (and only his third in all). At the start of the final day, Australia were 313 for 5, but Flintoff had Brad Haddin edge to second slip in the second over and that started a collapse. Soon after lunch, England had taken a lead in the series.

    2000
    On the first day of the match in Galle, an opening partnership of 193 between Marvan Atapattu and Sanath Jayasuriya set Sri Lanka on the way to their first Test win over South Africa. That only tells half the story, though. Jayasuriya bashed 148 off only 156 balls - 96 of them in a scintillating morning session. Sri Lanka got to 522 - and then came Murali, who brushed South Africa to an innings defeat with 13 for 171.

    2014
    Fourteen years later, South Africa won their first Test in Sri Lanka since 2000 with a 153-run trouncing in Galle. Oddly enough it was seamers Dale Steyn and Morne Morkel who starred in the win, taking 16 wickets between them. It was Hashim Amla's first Test as captain and he made his mark with an aggressive declaration, giving Sri Lanka four sessions to get 370. His bowlers needed just over two to bowl them out.

    1976
    Birth of yet another in a long line of Indian medium-pacers who looked promising but couldn't quite make it on the big stage. Debasis Mohanty managed only two Tests and 45 ODIs. He was effective in English conditions and was a last-minute call-up for the 1999 World Cup - where he took his best figures of 4 for 56 against Kenya.

    1990
    In a one-day international at Trent Bridge, Robin Smith scored a hundred in 101 balls, but India won to take the Texaco Trophy for the first time. It was the story of the Judge's life: all of his one-day hundreds came in England defeats. And only two of his nine Test hundreds came in English victories.

    1971
    Controversial seam bowler Ed Giddins was born. He received an extensive ban for drug use, but took one five-wicket haul in Test cricket, against Zimbabwe at Lord's in 2000. Two Tests and one wicket later, Giddins was dropped.

    1909
    Birth of the confident and supremely patient Eric Rowan, who was often the mainstay of South Africa's batting. Against England in Johannesburg in 1948-49, he batted for six hours on the last day to make an unbeaten 156 that saved the match. At Headingley in 1951 he followed his Test-best 236 (making him the oldest player to score a double-century) in the first innings with 60 not out in the second. His brother Athol also played for South Africa.

    1973
    One of the new wave of West Indian fast bowlers, Nixon McLean, was born. Unfortunately his middle names (Alexei McNamara) were more impressive than his Test average (42.56).

    Other birthdays
    1911 Baqa Jilani (India)
    1934 Doug Padgett (England)
    1963 Catherine Campbell (New Zealand)
    1974 Caroline Salomons (Netherlands)
    1975 Atiq-uz-Zaman (Pakistan)

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    Exclamation July 21

    July 21 down the years

    The man who made batting look l
    A South African legend is born

    Barry Richards averaged 72.57 in a cut-short Test career

    1945
    South Africa's isolation restricted Barry Richards to only four Tests, against Australia in 1969-70 - but he showed the full range of his talent in averaging 72.57 and scoring a whirlwind century in Durban. Although the drudgery of county cricket rarely appealed to him, he scored a great many runs for Hampshire and formed a dynamic opening partnership with Gordon Greenidge. When he made 356 for South Australia against Western Australia in Perth in 1970-71, he scored 325 in a day.

    1981
    The final day of an astounding turnaround at Headingley. Ian Botham had hauled England back into contention with 145 not out on the fourth day. Now it was Bob Willis' turn. Steaming down the hill from the Kirkstall Lane End, as if in a trance, Willis plundered three wickets in 11 balls before lunch, then five more in the afternoon session to deliver England victory by 18 runs - the first side since 1894-95 to win a Test match after following on. You wouldn't have known it from Willis' reaction, though. In an infamous post-match interview, thoroughly drained by his efforts, he showed as much enthusiasm as a man who had just run over the family

    2005
    From final days to first days - and one of the most blood-and-thunder openings to any Test series in history. The 2005 Ashes had been hyped to the rafters all summer long, but amazingly, when the contest finally got underway in front of a packed and expectant Lord's crowd, the cut-and-thrust cricket more than matched the anticipation. Steve Harmison cracked Justin Langer on the elbow second ball and drew blood on Ricky Ponting's cheek as he hounded his way to figures of 5 for 43. Australia were bundled out for 190, but that was just the start of the entertainment. With his matchless manipulation of the Lord's slope, Glenn McGrath responded with a spell of 5 for 2 in 31 balls, including his 500th wicket in Tests, to set his side up for a 239-run win. The series, however, still had one or two twists and turns in store.

    2014
    The end of a 28-year wait. India pulled off their first Test win at Lord's since 1986 (and their first away win for three years) when Ishant Sharma's 7 for 74 spurred them to a 95-run win. Chasing 319, England crumbled to a series of reckless pull shots on the final afternoon to go from 173 for 4 to 223 all out. It extended their winless run to ten Tests and intensified the pressure on the struggling captain, Alastair Cook.

    1934
    Birth of Indian allrounder Chandu Borde, a calm and collected batsman who played fast bowling with an easy assurance. In 55 Tests he scored 3061 runs at 35.59, and took 52 wickets with his legspin, a skill that was underused as time went by. Successful with bat and ball against England in 1961-62, he top-scored with 68 and 61 and took 4 for 65 in the win in Calcutta. The biggest of his five Test centuries was an unbeaten 177 against Pakistan in Madras in 1960-61.

    1994
    The first day of South Africa's first Test in England for 29 years. They had played 14 Tests since their return to the fold in Bridgetown in 1991-92, but to play at Lord's again was proof of their re-acceptance. Andrew Hudson and Gary Kirsten received a standing ovation as they came down the pavilion steps to start the innings - an event that, shamefully, was missed by the BBC coverage - and the emotion of the moment was almost too much for Hudson, who padded up to his first ball from Phil DeFreitas. He fell soon afterwards, but Kirsten ground on, adding 106 for the third wicket with Kepler Wessels, who went on to become South Africa's first centurion at Lord's in 39 years, and ultimately their first winning captain for 59 years.

    1979
    The first hundred in a Benson & Hedges Cup final - and it just had to come from Graham Gooch. In the competition's 30-year history, Gooch made the most runs, won the most Gold Awards, made the highest score... Here he slapped a robust 120 as Essex beat Sussex by 35 runs, and received one of his 22 Gold Awards.

    1984
    Another B&H final, and a less obvious Man of the Match. Lancashire captain John Abrahams didn't bowl, took one catch, and was out for 0, but Peter May gave him the award for his captaincy - and for his performances in getting Lancashire to the final. They won this one comfortably enough, by six wickets and with 12 overs to spare, after Warwickshire were bundled out for 139.

    1947
    Birth of Sunil Gavaskar's opening partner. Chetan Chauhan shared ten Test century partnerships with Gavaskar in the '70s and early '80s - their most famous one being 213 at The Oval in 1979. Chauhan batted more than five hours for his 80 and Gavaskar got 221, but the match was drawn with India needing nine to win. Chauhan was unlucky not to get a hundred in his 40 Tests; he was the first to get to 2000 runs without a century.

    2001
    An attack of butterfingers for England at Lord's. Adam Gilchrist took the second Test away from them with a searing 90 - but he was dropped four times, three of them sitters, all of them off Darren Gough, who looked a broken man. A day later, Australia were 2-0 up in the series, and England's ambition had gone from regaining the Ashes to avoiding a whitewash.

    1934
    The last hurrah of leg theory. Playing for Nottinghamshire against Lancashire at Old Trafford, Bill Voce was taken out of the attack after he bowled four overs of Bodyline, during which Lancashire's opener Jack Iddon was struck twice. The second blow resulted in him being carried off. Voce's Bodyline colleague, Harold Larwood, making his return to the Nottinghamshire side after an ankle injury, bowled to a conventional field throughout.

    1995
    The first pair of Brian Lara's life. In a tour match in Canterbury he fell each time to Kent's Dr Julian Thompson. Ignominy does wonderful things for sharpening the mind, though. In the three Tests before this, Lara had made 182 runs; in the three that followed it, he larruped 583. The doctor's medicine didn't do England much good.

    2000
    A masterclass from Muttiah Muralitharan in Galle. In their first match of the post-Cronje era, the South Africans never looked remotely comfortable on a dry and cracked pitch, and crumbled to 238 all out in reply to Sri Lanka's 522. Murali took 6 for 87, with only Daryll Cullinan standing firm, with 114 not out. Cullinan was under no illusions, however, describing his 231-ball survival against Murali as "a lottery".

    1945
    Birth of left-arm seamer Geoff Dymock, who would have played more Tests for Australia in an era less blessed with fast-bowling talent. He was nearly 30 when he made his debut, taking seven against New Zealand in Adelaide. At 34 he toured India, and after going wicketless in the first Test, he took 24 in the next four - including 12 in Kanpur. He played 21 Tests in all and averaged 27.12 with the ball.

    1895
    Nummy Deane, born today, is best remembered for his fine captaincy of young and inexperienced South African teams against England in 1927-28 and 1929. In 1927-28 against England his captaincy was credited with helping his side salvage a draw after they went down 0-2 in the series. At The Oval in 1929, South Africa were 20 for 3 when Deane joined Herbie Taylor at the crease. They added 214; Deane made a courageous 93 and the Test was drawn. He was persuaded out of retirement for England's visit in 1930-31, but finding himself out of form, he resigned after two Tests.

    1988
    The third incumbent in the summer of four captains. After Mike Gatting had been sacked for an alleged dalliance with a barmaid, and John Emburey had been tried and discarded after consecutive defeats, the chairman of selectors, Peter May, decided his godson would be the man for the job. Thus Chris Cowdrey completed only the second father-and-son pair to captain England in Test cricket. But even he couldn't stop West Indies from winning yet again, by ten wickets at Headingley. With personal scores of 0 and 5, he didn't play Test cricket again.
    1886
    On the last day of a three-day Test, Johnny Briggs took 6 for 45 to complete England's last innings win over Australia at Lord's for 48 years. After opening their account with two wins in two against Australia, England have only won five since, in 34 attempts.

    1884
    That other victory began here, the first day of Test cricket at Lord's. England were 90 for 3 in reply to Australia's 229 all out. Allan G Steel went on to make 148 and George Ulyett's 7 for 36 bowled England to an innings win.

    1863
    Aubrey Smith was born on this day. Later Sir Aubrey, who became a well-known Hollywood character actor, Smith (nicknamed "Round the corner" because of his peculiar run-up) played for Sussex, and led England in South Africa's inaugural Test, in Port Elizabeth in 1888-89. He's still the only player to have captained England in his only Test.

    1975
    When he arrived on the scene, Ravindra Pushpakumara was touted as a perfect new-ball partner for Chaminda Vaas. He was powerfully built and had a long run-up, but turned out to lack the variation required to be successful on the dull pitches of the subcontinent. In 23 Tests he took 58 wickets at 38.65.

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    Default July 22

    July 22 down the years

    Murali signs off with 800 wickets
    A Sri Lankan legend bids farewell to Tests

    Muttiah Muralitharan reached the magical figure in the last minute

    2010
    Shane Warne was once asked who wrote his scripts. That would be a good question to put to his long-time rival as well. When Muttiah Muralitharan announced his intention to retire from Tests before the first match against India, in Galle, he had 792 wickets. By the end of day three - day two was a complete washout - he had inched to 793, with Sachin Tendulkar's wicket. But the fourth day brought 12 Indian wickets, five of them going to Murali. On the final day, with India following on, VVS Laxman shepherded the tail, seeking a draw while Sri Lanka pushed for a win and those two wickets for Murali. When Laxman was run out with one wicket remaining, many feared it wasn't to be. But Murali got Pragyan Ojha to nick one to slip - a record 77th time c Jayawardene b Muralitharan appeared on a Test scorecard - and, like Richard Hadlee, finished with a wicket off his final ball in Test cricket.


    1995
    Death of Harold Larwood - in Australia, the country whose batsmen he'd once traumatised. One of the fastest bowlers of all time, Larwood took 33 wickets in the controversial 1932-33 Bodyline series, including Don Bradman's four times, as England regained the Ashes but nearly lost an empire. In his last innings of this, his last series, he hit 98, the highest Test score by a nightwatchman for England until surpassed by Alex Tudor at Edgbaston 66 years later. A century seemed Larwood's for the taking until he was caught in the deep by that dreadful fielder Bert Ironmonger, who was nicknamed "Dainty" because he wasn't.

    1950
    A towering innings comes to an end. Frank Worrell's 261, his highest score, and at the time the highest score in a Test at Trent Bridge, set West Indies on their way to a first-innings lead of 335 and a victory by ten wickets that put them 2-1 up in the series. It wasn't all plain sailing, though. Cyril Washbrook and Reg Simpson opened England's second innings with 212 for the first wicket, and at 326 for 2 the match was back in the balance. But then, not for the first time in the series, the spin twins took over. Sonny Ramadhin (5 for 135) and Alf Valentine (3 for 140) decimated the lower and middle orders, with the last five wickets falling for 28 runs. Only Godfrey Evans, with an assured 63, provided any resistance.

    1890
    On his Test debut Jack Barrett became the first opener to carry his bat through a completed Test innings in an Ashes Test. At Lord's his unbeaten 67 out of 176 gave Australia hope of an unlikely victory after they had collapsed to 132 all out in the first innings, but WG Grace was in no mood to capitulate. His 75 not out carried England to a seven-wicket victory - "an innings," wrote the Almanack, "entirely worthy of his reputation".

    2013
    After a thrilling start at Trent Bridge, a match that brought Edgbaston 2005 to mind, England went up 2-0 in the Ashes with an emphatic, if anti-climatic, 347-run win at Lord's - Australia's third largest defeat by runs. Joe Root became the youngest Englishman to score a Test hundred at the venue, and he hurt Australia with his bowling as well, taking the wickets of Usman Khawaja and Michael Clarke - the only two batsmen in the side to cross 50 - in the second innings.

    1937
    John Price, born today, was a solidly built right-arm fast bowler with a distinctive angled approach to the wicket and an exceptionally long run-up. On his day he was dangerous, with pace generated by his powerful upper body, and the ability to swing the ball away from the right-hander, but he was too prone to injury to become an England regular. His fielding in the deep was superb, his batting at No. 11 less so. He played 242 matches for Middlesex, taking 734 wickets

    1978
    Birth of Runako Morton, the West Indies batsman who died at 33 in a road accident, when his car crashed into a utility pole. Morton was mostly remembered for lying about the death of a grandmother so he could skip the Champions Trophy, but he got past the controversy, as he did previous incidents at the West Indian Academy, and went on to settle into the West Indies one-day side by 2005. But it was a brief stay (during which he recorded the then-slowest duck, off 31 balls) for though he scored 90 against Australia in the 2006 Champions Trophy, his form fell away subsequently.

    1982
    Nuwan Kulasekara, born today, made an instant impression when he was plucked out of relative obscurity. From a bustling run-up and whippy open-chested action, he generates lively pace, moves the ball off the seam, and reverse-swings it. Between April 2008 and May 2009, he took 47 ODI wickets and became Sri Lanka's leading one-day strike bowler. In 2013, he took a career-best 5 for 22, against Australia in Brisbane. Injuries to his hamstring and groin ruled him out of action in early 2014 but he returned for the England tour and played a part in the ODI series win.

    1992
    The birth of left-arm spinner George Dockrell who made his international debut for Ireland at 17. He was named the ICC Associate Player of the Year in 2012, two years after his debut. He played for Ireland at the World T20 in Sri Lanka and a year later helped Ireland win the World T20 qualifier for the 2014 tournament in Bangladesh.

    1981
    Birth of a towering West Indies left-arm spinner. At 6'7", Sulieman Benn is one of the tallest spinners to play for West Indies. Since his debut in 2008, he has been one of their most reliable slow bowlers, with his added ability to generate bounce. He picked up eight wickets in the first Test against England at Sabina Park in February 2009 to help set up what was ultimately a Test series win. He registered remarkable figures of 4 for 6 in a T20I against Zimbabwe in early 2010. His first five-wicket haul came in the drawn Test against Australia in Adelaide in December 2009.


    1935
    That well-known medium-pacer Tom Cartwright was born. On his Test debut, against Australia at Old Trafford in 1964, he bowled 77 overs in taking 2 for 118. In the following Test, at The Oval, he bowled 62 overs for figures of 3 for 110. Cartwright should have played many more than his five Tests, but he was mistrusted by the selectors, who preferred their change bowlers to have an extra yard of pace. He is, however, assured of a place in the pantheon, as the man who taught Ian Botham how to bowl.
    1859 (and 1865)

    VE Walker had a thing about July 22. On this day in 1859 he took 10 for 74 for England v Surrey. Six years later to the day, he took 10 for 104 for Middlesex v Lancashire.

    1989
    A New Zealand left-arm quick is born. With the ability to bowl at a brisk pace and move the ball both ways, Trent Boult has cemented his place in the New Zealand side. He took four wickets on debut - in New Zealand's historic seven-run win against Australia in Hobart in 2011 - and went on to take 20 wickets in five Tests against Sri Lanka and England. Two years later, his 10 for 100 blew away West Indies in Wellington in 2013. He was the joint-highest wicket-taker in the 2015 World Cup with 22 and in two Tests in England later that year, finished with 13 wickets.

    Other birthdays
    1863 Alec Hearne (England)
    1892 Jack MacBryan (England)
    1936 Dusty Rhodes (England)
    1937 Vasant Ranjane (India)

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    Default July 23

    July 23 down the years

    If at first you don't
    One of England's finest batsmen is born
    Graham Gooch scored 8900 Test runs, an England record till he was surpassed by Alastair Cook

    1953
    Graham Gooch, who was born today, took a while to find his feet in Test cricket but went on to become the best of his generation. Gooch scored 8900 runs in Tests, a record for England - after being dismissed for a pair on his debut, against Australia at Edgbaston in 1975. Pick of the bunch, 333 and all, was his 154 not out against West Indies at Headingley in 1991.

    1994
    The day Mike Atherton put some dirt in his pocket - and nearly lost his job. With England taking one hell of a beating against South Africa at Lord's, Atherton used the dirt to dry one side of the ball and so help Darren Gough get some reverse swing. Having dirt in his pocket was not illegal, but rubbing it on the ball contravened Law 42.5, and the match referee, Peter Burge, called him to explain his actions. Burge accepted Atherton's explanation, but the following day Atherton admitted lying to Burge. For that, he was fined ?2000 by Ray Illingworth - half for lying, half for having dirt in his pocket - and crucified by the press. Illy later told anyone who'd listen that the fines saved Athers' job. Lost in the furore was a real spanking for England: they lost by 356 runs, and were bowled out for only 99 in the second

    2008
    The review system for umpiring decisions was trialled for the first time in the Test between Sri Lanka and India at the SSC. On the second day, Harbhajan Singh's appeal for lbw against Malinda Warnapura was turned down and the review replays showed the field umpire to be spot on. Virender Sehwag later became the first man to be given out via the review system, and Tillakaratne Dilshan the first to continue batting even after having been given out by the on-field umpire. Dilshan's was also the first successful challenge of an umpiring decision. Both instances came with their share of controversy, as the technology used and the human application by the umpires left much to be desired.

    1949
    Birth of a world-class allrounder who lost a Test career because South Africa were banned. By the time South Africa were re-admitted, Clive Rice was past his best - but his best had been considerable. A hard-hitting batsman and aggressive pace bowler, he formed a famous partnership with Richard Hadlee that bowled Notts to the County Championship in 1981 and 1987. He was South Africa's first captain after the ban, in three one-day internationals in India in 1991-92 - but it was hardly a consolation.

    1972
    Birth of a batsman who experienced a rather surreal rebirth as a Test player. Floyd Reifer, who was born today, barely made an impression in the few opportunities he got. He wandered off the radar soon after his debut in 1997, hitting the headlines only in 2008 when he smashed six sixes in an over in a T20 league match in Barbados, coincidentally on the 40th anniversary of Garry Sobers' feat. The following year he was recalled to the West Indies Test team - a decade since he had played his last Test - after the senior players went on strike against the West Indies Cricket Board. More of a shock was the fact that he was named captain, albeit of a second-string team, against Bangladesh at home.

    1998
    Hansie Cronje scored a century on the first day of his 50th Test, at Trent Bridge, and launched a famous pre-planned assault on the recalled Ian Salisbury, but South Africa went on to lose the match.

    1949
    Brian Close made his Test debut, against New Zealand at Old Trafford. At 18 years 149 days, he's still the youngest ever to play Test cricket for England. In 1976 he became one of the oldest: 45 years 140 days.

    1934
    Don Bradman completed his second Test triple-century at Headingley, his favourite English ground, making 304 and sharing a stand of 388 with Bill Ponsford, who hit 181. Bradman's score alone was over 100 more than England's first-innings total. Clarrie Grimmett took seven and Bill O'Reilly five in the drawn match.

    1938
    If it's Headingley, it must be a big score by Bradman. The Don didn't make a triple-century this time (103), but the pitch was trickier than those in 1930 and 1934. Australia managed a slim first-innings lead and then O'Reilly took five in the second (ten for the match) to bowl England out for 123. Australia won by five wickets.

    1884
    On the last day of the first Test ever played at Lord's, George Ulyett completed figures of 7 for 36 to bowl Australia to an innings defeat.

    1942
    Death of a double international. Andy Ducat died as he would probably have wanted to die: he had a heart attack while batting in a match at Lord's. He played football and cricket for England, scoring the only goal of the game against Wales in 1910 and making 3 and 2 in his only Test, against the all-conquering Australians at Headingley in 1921.

    1950
    Left-hand opener Alan Turner, born today, played 14 Tests for Australia between 1975 and 1977. He made a battling 81 against West Indies in his fourth Test, and got his only Test hundred later in the series. Turner also played the 1975 World Cup and scored his only one-day hundred in a group game against Sri Lanka. After retirement he became an executive with Benson & Hedges, for many years the leading sponsor of Australian cricket.

    Other birthdays
    1952 Paul Hibbert (Australia)
    1979 Richard Sims (Zimbabwe)

    ? ESPN Sports Media

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    Exclamation July 24

    July 24 down the years

    A stylist in Glasses
    The birth of Zed
    Zaheer Abbas scored 5062 Test runs

    1947
    That classical strokemaker Zaheer Abbas was born. Playing in glasses for much of his career, he scored 5062 Test runs for Pakistan (1969-70 to 1985-86) and is the only batsman to have hit two separate hundreds in a first-class match eight times. He twice made Test double-hundreds in England: 274 at Edgbaston in 1971 and 240 at The Oval in 1974.

    1958
    A distinguished trio made their Test debuts for England against New Zealand at Old Trafford: Ted Dexter hit 52 and Ray Illingworth took three wickets in 45 economical overs. The third newcomer, Raman Subba Row, made only 9, but it scarcely mattered: England won by an innings and 13 runs, and became the first side to win the opening four Tests of a series in England.

    2010
    Pakistan beat Australia in a Test after 15 years. And after much drama. Playing their home series in England, after security concerns ruled out any international cricket in their country, Pakistan lost the first Test by a huge margin and their captain, Shahid Afridi, who announced his retirement from Tests. The 25-year-old Salman Butt took over at Headingley and Mohammad Asif and Mohammad Amir wiped out Australia for 88 - their lowest first-innings total in 53 years. Pakistan were set a target of 180, and at the end of day three they needed 40 to win with seven wickets in hand. Nerves jangled as they lost another four on the fourth morning but fittingly Amir, who took seven in the match, was at the crease when the winning runs were hit.

    1981
    Doug Bollinger turned 29 the day Australia lost to Pakistan at Headingley in 2010. He broke into the national side the previous year, and picked up eight wickets, including his maiden five-for, in his third Test, against West Indies in Perth, and followed with seven more in Hamilton three months later. By then he had taken 33 wickets in 20 one-dayers, with five-fors in Abu Dhabi and Guwahati. He was included in the squad for the first Test of the 2009-10 Ashes but released due to fitness doubts. Bollinger missed the 2011 World Cup, needing ankle surgery. He was picked only for the limited-overs leg of the Sri Lanka tour that followed the World Cup and took nine wickets in the series win.

    1947
    When South Africa's Alan Melville hit a four to bring up his hundred at Lord's, it was his fourth century in successive Test innings, all against England, spread over eight years. In 1938-39, he made 103 in the Timeless Test in Durban, and then followed with 189 and 104 not out at Trent Bridge in the first Test of 1947, South Africa's first after the war.

    1931
    Brilliant little George Gunn was 52 years old when he completed an innings of 183 for Notts against Warwickshire. His son George Vernon Gunn scored 100 not out in the same innings.

    1867
    The immortal Fred Tate was born. In contrast with his son Maurice, who took 155 wickets for England, poor Fred played in only one Test, but he put his name on it - and not just because it began on his birthday. After dropping a vital catch at Old Trafford in 1902, he was the last man out at the end of the match, which Australia won by three runs. Victor Trumper had scored a hundred before lunch in the first innings. By winning "Tate's Match", Australia retained the Ashes.

    1917
    Australian opening batsman Jack Moroney was born. After making a duck in his first Test knock, against South Africa in Johannesburg in 1949-50, he returned to the same ground later in the series to score a hundred in each innings.

    1996
    Death of Alphonso (Alfie) Roberts. When he appeared in his only Test, against New Zealand in Auckland in 1955-56, he became the first cricketer from the "small islands" (in his case, St Vincent) to play for West Indies.

    Other birthdays
    1888 Arthur Richardson (Australia)
    1929 Alfred Binns (West Indies)
    1935 George Varnals (South Africa)
    1938 John Sparling (New Zealand)
    1976 Cherie Bambury (Australia)
    1982 Tessa van der Gun (Netherlands)
    1985 Juan Theron (South Africa)

    ? ESPN Sports Media

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    Exclamation July 25

    July 25 down the years

    A match full of milestones
    Kevin Pietersen marked Test No. 2000 with a double-hundred

    2011
    The 2000th Test. Also, the 100th Test between England and India, Duncan Fletcher's 100th Test as coach, and one that bore the possibility of Sachin Tendulkar making his 100th hundred at the home of cricket. Burdened by these milestones, the Lord's Test got off to a slow start. The only drama on day one was Zaheer Khan pulling out of the attack after straining a hamstring. A weakened India struggled on day two, and watched Kevin Pietersen get his first century at home in three years, 202. Praveen Kumar joined him on the honours board with five wickets, as did Rahul Dravid, who made a fighting unbeaten hundred - though it didn't help India avoid a big first-innings deficit, and an eventual loss, the first of eight defeats overseas in a row.

    1986
    The beginning of England's tale of four wicketkeepers. When Richard Hadlee sent Bruce French to hospital in the first Test at Lord's, England needed a replacement keeper. Bill Athey donned the gloves for two overs, and then Bob Taylor - aged 45 and at the ground doing PR work for the sponsors Cornhill Insurance - sheepishly came onto the field and kept so impeccably that it seemed he'd never been away. The next day Hampshire's Bobby Parks stood in from after lunch, and then French resumed on the fourth day - for all of one ball, which was all it took to wrap up New Zealand's innings. Oddly, none of the four took any catches.

    1997
    At Headingley, a pivotal moment. With the series locked at 1-1, Australia were 50 for 3 in reply to England's 172, Matthew Elliott poked at an awayswinger from Mike Smith, and edged it gently towards first slip - where Graham Thorpe dropped it. It was a dolly. Off the very next ball, Dean Headley nabbed Steve Waugh, so the Aussies might have been 50 for 5. Instead their fifth-wicket pair of Elliott and Ricky Ponting, who made his maiden Test century in his first Ashes Test, added a soul-destroying 288. Elliott, 29 when he was dropped, plunged 170 daggers into Thorpe's heart. England were pummelled by an innings - and Smith, who himself later dropped Elliott, never did take a Test wicket.

    1999
    Lucky 13th for New Zealand. They had got close on a couple of occasions, not least on their previous visit in 1994, but at the 13th attempt, they won a Test at Lord's. The architects of their nine-wicket win were Chris Cairns, who took 6 for 77 to shoot England out for 186 in their first innings, and Matt Horne, whose even 100 ensured that the initiative was not lost. England, who had won an extraordinary match at Edgbaston to go 1-0 up, never recovered, and eventually succumbed 2-1. It was an inauspicious start to Nasser Hussain's tenure as captain.

    1921
    Warwick Armstrong's reputation as an ogre seemed to get to the umpires on the second day of the fourth Test between England and Australia at Old Trafford. When England's captain, Lionel Tennyson, tried to declare shortly before the close of play, Armstrong objected - under the laws as they stood then, because the first day had been washed out the match was classed as a two-day game and so declarations were not permissible - and a lengthy discussion ensued. When play resumed, Armstrong, who had just completed an over before the delay, bowled the next one from the other end.

    1884
    The match between Lancashire and Gloucestershire was abandoned as a result of the death of Martha Grace, mother of WG and EM, who were both playing in the game. It remains the only first-class match to be abandoned for such a reason.

    1957
    The hat-trick taken by fast bowler Peter Loader against West Indies at Headingley was the last by an England bowler in a Test until Dominic Cork's in 1995. Loader dismissed West Indies captain John Goddard, then bowlers Sonny Ramadhin and Roy Gilchrist, as West Indies collapsed to 142 all out. England replied with 279, which was enough to seal an innings victory and an unassailable 2-0 lead in the series.

    1914
    At the age of 66, the incomparable WG Grace made 69 not out for Eltham away to Grove Park, his last innings in club cricket. He died the following year.

    1974
    The start of England's 500th Test (not counting the three abandoned without a ball being bowled), against Pakistan at Headingley, was marked by play being suspended for 14 minutes on the first morning after a bomb scare led to one of the stands being evacuated. The match ended in a draw.

    1900
    Living up to his reputation as one of the biggest hitters in history, Gilbert Jessop scored a hundred before lunch twice in the same match, for Gloucestershire in Bradford against a Yorkshire opening attack of George Hirst and Wilfred Rhodes.

    1964
    A maiden Test century for Bob Simpson turned into a monumental 311 at Old Trafford. The match, though, ended as a monumental bore.

    1908
    Birth of spectacled Yorkshire fast bowler Bill Bowes, who dismissed Don Bradman for a duck in the Melbourne Test of the Bodyline series. Bowes played 15 Tests in all, though that MCG match was only one of two he played outside England. He took nine in the series decider at The Oval in 1934, but Australia went on to clinch the Ashes with a 562-run win. Considering Larwood, Voce and Allen bowled faster than him, Bowes was often overlooked, and dropped for a spinner. He took 68 Test wickets at 22.

    1930
    Birth of New Zealand batsman Murray Chapple, who played 14 Tests between 1953 and 1966, 11 of them against South Africa, a country he toured twice, the second time in 1961-62, as vice-captain to John Reid. Chapple was a member of the first New Zealand side to win a Test match, against West Indies in Auckland in 1955-56, and in his last Test match, against England in Christchurch ten years later, he was New Zealand's captain. Injury forced him into retirement and he became a national selector until 1970.

    Other birthdays
    1925 Alistair Taylor (South Africa)
    1968 Rudi Bryson (South Africa)
    1982 Monde Zondeki (South Africa)
    1983 Isobel Joyce (Ireland)
    1983 Cecilia Joyce (Ireland)

    Espn cricinfo

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    Arrow July 26

    July 26 down the years

    Immovable object, irresistible force

    Athers and White Lightning face off

    Allan Donald gave it everything but England and Atherton won Clive Mason

    1998
    Mike Atherton v Allan Donald. At Trent Bridge, a heavyweight contest to match any seen in the Test arena for 25 years, and one that Atherton won... just. Donald bowled a brutal, unrelenting spell from around the wicket, and should have had Atherton given caught behind off the glove when he had made 27. Soon after, Mark Boucher dropped Nasser Hussain, and Donald was apoplectic. He took all of his rage out on Atherton in a colossal struggle, but he couldn't break Atherton's will, and a day later England had squared the series, with Athers still there on 98 not out. In Wisden Cricket Monthly, Scyld Berry wrote that, "Iron Mike had turned into Steel."

    1992
    Another series-levelling win for England - and another umpiring controversy. At Headingley, Pakistan were furious when Graham Gooch was given not out, despite being a long way short of his crease on a run-out appeal. Gooch went on to make 37, and the eventual scoreline - 99 for 4 - suggests a comfortable win, but it was anything but. It was a blistering, snarling match, notable for Neil Mallender's eight wickets on debut, Saleem Malik's majestic, not-out innings of 82 and 84, and an astonishing England collapse. In the first innings they were 292 for 2... and all out for 320 as Waqar Younis reverse-swung it all over the place. The last six batsmen managed only two runs between them.

    1993
    A year later and English cricket had hit rock bottom. Australia regained the Ashes with an innings victory at Headingley - and for the second time in the series, they had won a match in which they lost only four wickets. Allan Border's unbeaten 200 took the Aussies to 653 for 4, and then England were washed away, with Paul Reiffel taking eight wickets. Graham Gooch resigned after the match, with Mike Atherton, just 25 years old, his replacement.

    1858
    Birth of Tom Garrett. He played in 19 Tests for Australia, including the very first, against England in 1876-77, when he chipped in with bat and ball. The youngest player in that match, at only 18, he was also its last survivor, dying in 1943, shortly after his 85th birthday.

    1955
    The last day as an international umpire for Frank Chester. He first officiated as a 29-year-old at Lord's in 1924, and continued into his 61st year. The Test between England and South Africa at Headingley was his 48th, a world record before the arrival of ****ie Bird.

    1927
    Allrounder GS "Ram" Ramchand was born. In 33 Tests for India, he took 41 wickets and hit two centuries, including 109 against Australia in 1956-57.

    1971
    Khaled Mahmud, born today, played 12 Tests and 77 ODIs for Bangladesh. He took three wickets in his side's memorable win over Pakistan in the 1999 World Cup - a result that helped Bangladesh helped gain Test status - and was made captain after the side's poor 2003 World Cup. But leadership duties didn't improve his bowling average and he decided to retire after a tough series against England in late 2003 - a decision he later reversed. He finally quit the game in 2006 after top-scoring for Bangladesh in an ODI against Sri Lanka.

    Other birthdays
    1888 Reginald Hands (South Africa)
    1970 Phil Alley (Australia)

    ? ESPN Sports.com

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    Exclamation july 27

    July 27 down the years

    Captain Grumpy is born
    Allan Border: the man who turned Australia's fortunes around

    1955
    That great competitor Allan Border was born. First selected for Australia during the upheaval of World Series Cricket in 1978, Border swiftly became the rock of Australia's batting, and the captain who turned their fortunes round. He was a reluctant leader at first - the original Captain Grumpy - and little wonder, as Australia stumbled from one humiliation to another, including back-to-back series defeats against New Zealand in 1985-86. But Border himself never flinched. Arguably his finest hour as a batsman came against West Indies in 1983-84, when his innings of 98 and 100 - both not out - single-handedly saved the Trinidad Test, but it was the World Cup victory late in 1987 and the Ashes victory of 1989 that confirmed his status as a leader, and set Australia on the path towards world domination. In a 15-year career, he set world records for most Tests (156), Test runs (11,174), Test catches (also 156), consecutive Tests (a remarkable 153) and Tests as captain (93).

    1990
    Graham Gooch attains greatness at last. At the end of the 1980s, Gooch's Test record was something of a curate's egg - his average of 36.90, with eight hundreds from 73 Tests, did not do him justice. But in 1990, galvanised by his appointment as captain, he embarked on a transformation. In a golden summer in Test and county cricket, Gooch helped himself to 1058 runs in six Tests. Almost half of these - 456 - came in one match, against India at Lord's, including, on this day, his career-best score of 333. It was a match sent from the gods, studded with performances of breathtaking brilliance: Mohammad Azharuddin's lordly 121, Kapil Dev's four consecutive sixes to save the follow-on, Sachin Tendulkar's one-handed running catch to dismiss Allan Lamb... But Gooch's achievement topped the lot. In the second innings he added a second century - 123 - to become the first player to score a triple-century and a century in the same first-class match. England won by 247

    1969
    That great fielder Jonty Rhodes was born. Rhodes was 22 years old when he made his debut for South Africa in the 1992 World Cup, and immediately made his mark with his electric work in the covers. His full-length dive to run out Inzamam-ul-Haq in the group match in Brisbane was reproduced on billboards throughout South Africa, though his trademark is the gravity-defying catch. Rhodes also scored three Test centuries for South Africa, the last against West Indies in 1998-99. A committed Christian and family man, Rhodes was an early casualty of the international fixture pile-up: he retired from Test matches in 2000 to concentrate solely on one-day cricket, and retired from that form after pulling out injured during the 2003 World Cup.

    1976
    West Indies retained the Wisden Trophy with a 55-run victory at Headingley. England needed 260, but from 140 for 4 they faded away. Still there at the bitter end, with 76 not out to add to his first-innings 116, was their captain Tony Greig, still living the dream of making West Indies grovel. Instead it was England who were pleading for mercy, and they would not beat West Indies in a Test anywhere for another 14 years.

    1915
    Australian "mystery spinner" Jack Iverson was born. By gripping the ball between his thumb and a bent middle finger, Iverson was able to launch the ball in springboard fashion at the unsuspecting batsman. He caused a sensation in his only Test series, taking 21 wickets in 1950-51, including 6 for 27 in the third Test in Sydney, to help Australia retain the Ashes. Although a formidable bowler for years afterwards, he never put himself forward for Test selection again.

    1969
    One-day perfection. Playing for Somerset against Essex in Yeovil, in a John Player's County League fixture, Brian Langford returned figures of 8-8-0-0. It is a record unlikely to be bettered, coming as it did in the days when batsmen approached the one-day game in much the same way they treated county matches, dealing with each ball on its merits.

    1948
    Don Bradman's 29th and last Test hundred. Chasing a record 404 in the fourth Test at Headingley, Bradman's unbeaten 173, in partnership with Arthur Morris, who made 182, enabled Australia to canter home by seven wickets. They were also the last of the 6996 runs the Don would score in Test cricket.

    1936
    Between them, England and India scored 588 runs in the day at Old Trafford, still a Test record. The bulk of these - 398 - were scored by England, including 94 for Joe Hardstaff Jr and a pair of cameos from Walter Robins and Hedley Verity, whose 66 not out was his Test best. But Mushtaq Ali and Vijay Merchant replied in kind, reaching 190 for 0 at the close.

    1974
    A then world-record stand of 465 between Rohan Kanhai and John Jameson for Warwickshire against Gloucestershire was started and finished on the same day.

    1959
    Oxford University student Abbas Ali Baig scored 112 at Old Trafford on his Test debut for India after replacing the injured Vijay Manjrekar in the side. At 20 years, 131 days, he was then the youngest Indian to get a hundred on debut, and the first to achieve it an overseas Test. However, it was also his last. Baig played only nine more Tests.

    1990
    Feeding on some deliberately tame bowling, Tom Moody scored a century in 26 minutes for Warwickshire against Glamorgan in a county game in Swansea.

    1981
    Collins Obuya, born today, hit the headlines as a legspinning allrounder in the 2003 World Cup during Kenya's astonishing march to the semi-finals, where he picked up 13 wickets at 28.76, including 5 for 24 in the victory over Sri Lanka. That won him a contract with Warwickshire, but he failed to make an impression there. He missed his next chance on the big stage when appendicitis ruled him out of the 2004 Champions Trophy, and he then joined the players' strike that followed. Obuya reinvented himself as a top-order batsman and returned to international cricket, and he was Kenya's leading run-getter in the 2011 World Cup, an otherwise miserable tournament for his side. Obuya was made Kenya captain in place of Jimmy Kamande afterwards.

    1899
    Left-arm swing and spin bowler Percy Hornibrook was born. He didn't play for Australia until he was 29, but quickly made up for lost time, taking 7 for 92 at The Oval in 1930. It won Australia the Ashes after England had made 405 in the first innings. However, that was his last Test as he announced his retirement from first-class cricket at the end of the tour.


    ? ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

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