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World Cup flashbacks: When Clive Lloyd's change of tactics triggered Pakistan's collapse in 1979 semifinals

Clive Lloyd

Bengaluru, April 24: In the 1979 World Cup, the mighty West Indies led by the inimitable Clive Lloyd was looking for successful defence of the title which they had won four years back in the Old Blighty and they did everything right in the group stage, topping the points table after winning two of their three matches.

Pakistan, on the other hand, had made their maiden World Cup semifinal by finishing second in the group to England. Asif Iqbal's side met the Caribbeans in the hunt for their maiden final and they decided to take the bull by its horns.

The match was played at the Kennington Oval where Iqbal won the toss and decided to send the opposition in. The famed West Indian opening duo of Gordon Greenidge (73) and Desmond Haynes (65) gave them a flying start with 132 runs on the board.

Match scorecard

It was left to Iqbal himself to apply the brakes after such a start and he picked the first four batsmen of the solid Caribbean line-up -- Viv Richards (42) and captain Lloyd (37) besides the openers.

Collis Kings' 25-ball 34 at No.5 saw acceleration down the order as the Windies finished with 293 for six in the stipulated 60 overs. Iqbal was the pick of Pakistani bowlers with four for 56 while Imran Khan and Sarfraz Nawaz took one wicket apiece.

Majid's fight

Majid's fight

Chasing the target which was not easy against a formidable West Indian bowling attack.

Pakistan lost opener Sadiq Mohammad (2) to Michael Holding early, but the other opener Majid Khan (81) decided to give the world champions a tough fight.

Zaheer comes in

Zaheer comes in

He was joined by Zaheer Abbas (93) and the duo put up 166 runs for the second wicket against a bowling attack that included Andy Roberts, Holding, Colin Croft and Joel Garner.

The partnership had put even a captain like Lloyd under pressure and the target of 294 started looking increasingly smaller.

A terrific partnership by Majid-Abbas duo took Pakistan 118 runs closer to the target with nine wickets in hand and they went into the break.

Lloyd's tactics

Lloyd's tactics

During the break, Lloyd made a note of what was going wrong and in a swift change of tactic, decided to change the line of attack from the off stump to the leg.

His bowlers followed the captain's advice and once Zaheer fell while trying to glance Croft only to be caught by wicket-keeper Deryck Murray, the floodgates were all open.

Croft on fire

Croft on fire

Majid also departed 11 runs later, thanks to Croft again, and in the very next ball, the ever-reliable Javed Miandad was trapped before the wickets by the same bowler.

Pakistan's chase was never the same again as wickets started to fall at regular intervals as they lost the last nine wickets for only 74 runs to be eventually all out for 250 in the 57th over to lose the game by 43 runs.

 
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Story first published: Wednesday, April 24, 2019, 16:59 [IST]
Other articles published on Apr 24, 2019
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