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June 23, 1979: When Collis Overshadowed King Viv Richards

Cricketnext Staff | Updated: June 23, 2017, 11:23 AM IST
June 23, 1979: When Collis Overshadowed King Viv Richards

Vivian Richards and Collis King shared a 139-run stand that helped West Indies win the 1979 World Cup final against England (Getty Images)

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West Indies were the first team to dominate one-day international cricket since its inception in 1971. The team led by Clive Lloyd won the inaugural World Cup in 1975 and by the time the second installment was played in England in 1979, the Caribbean team had cemented their status as the numero uno side in the world in limited overs cricket.

West Indies, led once again by Lloyd, eased their way into the final where they came up against hosts England at the historic Lord's cricket ground on June 23, 1979. The scales were tilted in West Indies' favour but four quick wickets meant the defending champions were under the pump and the hosts were on top.

38 years to this day, the pair of Sir Vivian Richards and a little known Collis King started a demolition act which blew away England's hopes of becoming world champions. The duo launched a vicious attack on the English bowlers, hitting them to all parts of the ground.

Richards was class personified but for once his thunder was stolen by the man at the other end. Collis King was perhaps one of the cleanest hitters that one-day cricket has ever seen and was at his menacing best that day.

The Barbadian hit 86 crucial runs in just 66 deliveries, with the help of three massive sixes and ten boundaries, to put West Indies' title hopes back on track. The partnership of 139 runs was broken by Phil Edmonds.

Richards though continued and scored a masterful unbeaten century to guide the West Indies to a total of 286/9 in 60 overs. Richards staying unbeaten on 138 of 157 deliveries.

England's hopes of chasing the total down were given wings by a century stand between openers Mike Brearley and Geoffrey Boycott. But the duo scored at an excruciatingly slow pace and once they were sent back to the pavillion by Michael Holding, England's chances of chasing the total down were diminished.

Joel Garner bowled his trademark toe-crushing yorkers and picked up a five-wicket haul to hasten England's demise, who were bowled out for 194 in 51 overs as West Indies went on to the win their second World Cup title, a feat they haven't managed to repeat since.
First Published: June 23, 2017, 11:23 AM IST
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