Sri Lanka vs Australia, Kennington Oval, June 1975

From Janashakthi Book of Cricket, 1996, pp. 349-51.

Sri Lanka made its debut in  the Prudential Tournament in England in June 1975. It did so by invitation together with East Africa.  On the 11th Sri Lanka met Australia at The Oval. It was not an auspicious beginning, Sri Lanka losing by 53 runs. But the Sri Lankans impressed with their batting.

Duleep Mendis hooks Tennekoon hooks

Sri Lanka won the toss and decided to bat, but the omens were anything but auspicious. A demonstration by some Tamil youths, 20 minutes after play commenced, held up play for four minutes. Some squatted on the pitch, others distributed leafIets from an ‘Action Committee’ in Oxford. The leaflet alleged “the Sri Lanka cricket team was not picked on merit. There was discrimination against prominent Thamil players of international standard…” It added, “‘Sport’ and ‘Politics’ cannot be separated… We do not wish to spoil your enjoyment o{ the game of cricket. But can we stand by and watch the Sinhalese play while … Thamils are being deprived of the birthright?… We are forced to protest at the “Test” matches, to inform the World…”
After that interruption, it was back to cricket undisturbed. H.S.M. Peiris dismissed G.S. Chappell and K.D, Walters off successive deliveries, but Australia went on to total 328 for 5 off 173 deliveries. Tumer scored a century before lunch. The Australians averaged 5.4  per over. The Sri Lankans replied with 276 lot 4 off 129 deliveries, averaging 4.6 runs per over. This was the highest in the tournament by a team batting second. A featue of this innings was Sunil Wettimuny and Duleep Mendis retiring hurt and a Prudential Cup record 3rd wicket partnership of 162 in 143 minutes featured four batsmen: Wettimuny and Mendis (44 runs), Wettimuny and Tennekoon (14 runs) and’ Tennekoon and Tissera (82 rms)! Although the partnership appeared in priilt a record during the next two years, it was subsequently removed as four batsmen had been involved.

When Mendis was injured, Sri Lanka were 150 for 2′ But for the injuries to Mendis (hit on the forehead) and Sunil Wettimuny (hit on the right leg instep)’ both by Thomson, things may have been even closer. Thirteen minutes were lost due to these injuries. Thomson  conceded 22 runs off just 11 of his 72 deliveries! But it was a magnificent performance by Sri

Prudential World Cup, 7th Match: Australia v Sri Lanka at The Oval, Jun 11, 1975

Prudential World Cup – 7th match, Group B
Australia won by 52 runs
Played at Kennington Oval, London (neutral venue)
11 June 1975 (60-over match)
Australia innings (60 overs maximum) R B 4s 6s SR
RB McCosker b de Silva 73 111 2 0 65.76
A Turner c Mendis b de Silva 101 113 9 1 89.38
IM Chappell* b Kaluperuma 4 7 1 0 57.14
GS Chappell c Opatha b Pieris 50 50 5 1 100.00
KD Walters c Tennekoon b Pieris 59 66 5 0 89.39
JR Thomson not out 9 7 0 0 128.57
RW Marsh not out 9 7 0 0 128.57
Extras (b 1, lb 20, w 1, nb 1) 23
Total (5 wickets; 60 overs) 328 (5.46 runs per over)
Bowling O M R W Econ
ARM Opatha 9 0 32 0 3.55
HSM Pieris 11 0 68 2 6.18
B Warnapura 9 0 40 0 4.44
AN Ranasinghe 7 0 55 0 7.85
DS de Silva 12 3 60 2 5.00
LWS Kaluperuma 12 0 50 1 4.16
Sri Lanka innings (target: 329 runs from 60 overs) R B 4s 6s SR
SRD Wettimuny retired hurt 53 102 7 0 51.96
ER Fernando b Thomson 22 18 4 0 122.22
B Warnapura st †Marsh b Mallett 31 39 5 0 79.48
LRD Mendis retired hurt 32 45 5 0 71.11
APB Tennekoon* b IM Chappell 48 71 6 0 67.60
MH Tissera c Turner b IM Chappell 52 72 7 0 72.22
AN Ranasinghe not out 14 18 3 0 77.77
HSM Pieris not out 0 3 0 0 0.00
Extras (b 6, lb 8, w 8, nb 2) 24
Total (4 wickets; 60 overs) 276 (4.60 runs per over)
Bowling O M R W Econ
DK Lillee 10 0 42 0 4.20
JR Thomson 12 5 22 1 1.83
AA Mallett 12 0 72 1 6.00
KD Walters 6 1 33 0 5.50
MHN Walker 12 1 44 0 3.66
GS Chappell 4 0 25 0 6.25
IM Chappell 4 0 14 2 3.50

Match details


Toss – Sri Lanka, who chose to field
Points – Australia 4, Sri Lanka 0
ODI debut – SRD Wettimuny (Sri Lanka)
Player of the match – A Turner (Australia)
Umpires – WL Buddand AE Fagg

ALSO SEE

Kennington Oval 1975: Where Jeff Thomson outgunned Tamil Demonstrators,

20 JULY 2016, https://thuppahi.wordpress.com/2016/07/20/kennington-oval-1975-where-jeff-thomson-outgunned-tamil-demonstrators/

Sunil Wettimuny hit … and incapacitated

LRD Mendis retired hurt at 150/2

The 1975 Sri Lanka Squad at home before they left for UK –with trainer Raja Wickremasinghe (Richmond, Peradeniya Uni and SLAF) seated on extreme right…. and including two stand-by players

The Sri Lanka Squad before they boarded the bus for Nuwara Eliya training camp – with Board officials Neil Perera, Raja Wickremasinghe and KMT Perera….  [but with Tissera and Sunil Wettimuny missing because they were driving up]

The Sri Lankan IV at the World Cup with Manager KMT Perera, 1975

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Filed under Australian cricket, child of empire, confrontations on field, cricket and life, cricketing icons, Sri Lanka Cricket, unusual statistics

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