Friday, December 04, 2009

Ghosts Of West Indies Past

I'd like to remind the West Indies, and their Test Cricket hating captain, that they carry with them a lot of history and baggage from test series past, so at least try to put up a fight, or provide some entertainment. This has to be the first ever Adelaide test that I not only have no desire to go and watch, but can't be bothered to at least catch the first session on television. I found these two B&W photos in a scrapbook documenting the legendary 1960-61 Australia v West Indies test series that I recently purchased. This was a series that defined the way cricket would be played between the two giants for decades to come, but, sadly, even with the presence of Joel 'Big Bird' Garner in the tour side (albeit as team manager), the current team is anything but world class. Gerner would do worse than to sit these guys down with some footage of classic matches from the '60s, '70s, '80s and '90s and see the reaction. Let them see the likes of Wes Hall, Brian Lara, Andy Roberts, Joel Garner, Viv Richards, Clive Lloyd, Curtly Ambrose and co and see if that doesn't fire them up.

I doubt it'll happen. Until then, we still have video and DVD, so when the game is over in a three day flurry of Bollinger wickets (and let's face it - if you're a test cricketer and get out to the bowling of Hussey, you shouldn't be playing - even Huss was embarrassed) at least we'll have something decent to watch. As it stands, Gayle, who's stated that he'd be happy to see Test Cricket die the death in favour of 20/20 cricket (what an inspirational captain, eh), is doing his level best to see his wishes come true - the death of the long form of the game, as opposed to leading his side to victory.

Chris, Frank Worrell would have dropped you, not only from the side, but from the islands themselves, in a heartbeat, after your side's spineless capitulation already. Redemption should start today, but I'd not bet on it.

I'm not sure which game in the '60-'61 series this is, but as the original owner of the scrapbook came from Adelaide, and the bulk of the clippings came from Adelaide magazines, I'm expecting that the photos are from the Adelaide test. If anyone can spot them, feel free to comment and take a punt on which game it was!

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