(Compiled by Vineet Ramakrishnan)
We continue from the first part of the series, looking at the history of India-England encounters.
India sent their young and inexperienced side led by Mansoor Ali Khan Pataudi travelling to England and Pakistan suffering injuries throughout the tour. It was poor showing by India as they could cross the 200-run mark as a team only on one occasion in the six innings they played. Interestingly, Geoff Boycott made 246 not out and was dropped for slow scoring in the Headingley Test.
England 3 India 0 Drawn 0
First series victory for India in England came in this landmark tour which also witnessed resurgent of spin in India. Bishen Singh Bedi (11 wickets), Bhagwat Chandrasekar (13) and Srinivas Venkataragahavan (13) along with Erapalli Prasanna bamboozled the England side in all the three Test matches. The domination of the spinners is quite evident from the fact that out of the 244 England wickets to fall in the tour, 197 were picked up by the famed spin quadrate. It was at The Oval, where India chased 173 with four wickets in hand courtesy Chandrasekar’s 6 for 38 to bowl England out for 101 and so win the match and the series.
England 0 India 1 Drawn 2
India`s spinner quadrate continued their good form in this tour as well. Again domination of the tweakers was evident as only three wickets fell to Indian seamers in all of the five Test matches. Tony Lewis-led team stated off with a win, but India came back strongly in the next two Tests winning by 28 runs and again by four wickets to bag the series. The teams played out the last two Tests of the series with high-scoring draws.
India 2 England 1 Drawn 2
1974 tour greeted India with the most adverse of all climatic conditions. The mornings were one of the wettest and coldest in the tour. This time around, the English were not bamboozled by the Indian spin attack as the tried and tested Indian strategy was thrown out of the window by the likes of Dennis Amiss, Tony Greig and captain Mike Denness. Geoff Arnold and Chris Old routed the Indian bowling attack as they were instrumental in bowling out the visitors for a meagre 42 at Lord’s, one of the low points in India’s Test history. At Old Trafford, England won by 113 runs. At Lord`s, it was humiliation for India and in the final match; England lost only two wickets as they won by an innings.
This tour saw ODIs being played between the two teams.
Tests: England 3 India 0 Drawn 0
ODIs: England 2 India 0
Tony Greig was under tremendous pressure after tasting defeat in Australia and coming to India on the back of the disastrous ‘grovel’ series against West Indies. He had to prove a point. And a point he did prove leading England to victory in India for the first time in nearly twenty years. India had slid down to one of their worst phases in Test history as they crumbled to an innings and 25 runs defeat, ten wickets and 200 runs in three Test matches but India did redeem themselves with a win at Bangalore.
Tests: India 1 England 3 Drawn 1
This probably was the most closely contested Test series at that time. England won handsomely at Edgbaston courtesy a fine double ton by David Gower in the very first match of the four-match series. In the next two Tests, weather played spoilsport. At Lord`s, Ian Botham (5 for 35) bowled India out for 96 but rain and hundreds from Gundappa Viswanath and Dilip Vengsarkar earned them a draw. In the final Test at the Sunil Gavaskar made 221 to put India in sight of chasing a record target of 483 but they fell short by just nine runs earning themselves a draw.
Tests: England 1 India 0 Drawn 3
The 1980 tour was to celebrate the Golden Jubilee of the Indian board and England played a one off Test match in Bombay while returning from a long tour Down Under. England registered a dominating win with Ian Botham displaying his calibre as an all-rounder taking 6 for 58 and 7 for 48 and scoring 114.
Test: India 0 England 1
It was a six match series that too on the lifeless Indian pitches with batsmen enjoying their time in the middle and bowlers slugging it out in the most hostile conditions. Five draws out of the six did not either help getting in the crowds. The early part of 1980 was a turmoil-ish one in the cricket fraternity with voices of anti-apartheid movements echoing more vehemently. The series itself was doubtful as some of England`s squad had played in South Africa. It was the first Test match at Bombay which succeeded to provide a result courtesy fine bowling performance by Kapil Dev and Madan Lal.
Tests: India 1 England 0 Drawn 5
ODIs: India 2 England 1
Immediately after the India series, England hosted India and with good success. England won both, the Test series as well as the ODIs. It was at Lord’s were England registered the only win of their Test series dominated by bowlers, particularly Bob Willis and Ian Botham. The lord of Lord’s, Vengsarkar cracked yet another century (157) at home of cricket but for a losing cause. The series is also remembered for the famous duels between the top two all-rounders at that time, Ian Botham and Kapil Dev.
Tests: England 1 India 0 Drawn 2
ODIs: England 2 India 0
England came back from behind to win the Test series, first time any visiting side had done that. But the series was over shadowed by the assassination of Indira Gandhi and few weeks later, murder of British High Commissioner. England had to go to Colombo for nine days to wait for the tension in India to ease down a bit. The series resumed thereafter. India won the first Test at Kanpur by eight wickets with Laxman Sivaramakrishnan taking 12 wickets. But at Delhi, Phil Edmonds and Pat Pocock spun England to an unexpected eight-wicket win in the final afternoon. After a weather-marred draw at Calcutta, England won by nine wickets at Madras thanks to 11 for 163 from Neil Foster and double hundreds from Gatting and Graeme Fowler.
Tests: India 1 England 2 Drawn 2
ODIs: India 1 England 4
It was an early summer tour for India meaning along with tussle against English cricketers, India had to deal with the weather conditions as well. And they did deal with it in good manner winning the ODI series, named Texaco Trophy 2-0 and completing the tour on a high with 2-0 victory in Tests as well. Vengsarkar again cracked a ton at Lord’s in the series.
Tests: England 0 India 2 Drawn 1