30 July 2014
West Indies ICC Cricket World Cup Memories
With a never-ending battery of intimidating fast bowlers, a steady supply of swashbuckling batsmen, astute leadership and an unrivalled will-to-win, West Indies dominated the 1970s era of the ICC Cricket World Cup.
Sir Vivian Richards scored an unbeaten 138 when West Indies defeated England in the ICC Cricket World Cup 1979 final.
“It was the first time we were world champions in anything to do with cricket. Before that there was nothing to say that you were king of the world. It was the beginning of the really great West Indies team of the 70s and 80s,” says Azim.
Although a win in the inaugural World Cup was a watershed moment for West Indies cricket, Baldath says victory in 1979 showed just how good the team was.
“That was the coming of age of greatness of the team. A lot of the guys played professionally in England and they wanted to do well over there. They were determined to beat all teams they played against and become world champions.
“In 1983 we had it in our hands again – but India bowled us out of the match,” says Baldath.
Both men agree that fast bowling was key to West Indies success – something they had no shortage of.
“We had any amount of fast bowlers that we wanted. We started in 1975 with Andy Roberts. Then in 1979 we had Colin Croft, Joel Garner, Michael Holding and Malcolm Marshall. With the bat we had Gordon Greenidge, Viv Richards, Clive Lloyd and Larry Gomes. We were powerful with bat and ball.”
Despite not adding to its two World Cup titles since 1979, Azim believes that West Indies can compete strongly at the ICC Cricket World Cup 2015 in Australia and New Zealand.
“In One Day International cricket the chance is always there. With Sunil Narine, Dwayne Bravo, Chris Gayle and Kieron Pollard we can compete with anyone in the world.
“We get good crowd support in Australia and play well there. The conditions are West Indian in nature with bouncy, hard pitches. It’s somewhere we will enjoy playing,” says Azim.
With history on its side and plenty of star power to call upon, West Indies will be a team to watch at the ICC Cricket World Cup 2015. Make sure you get along to see them in person. Click here for ticketing information.
Hobart First XI: Tourist Highlights
Around the wicket with: Sir Richard Hadlee