Dennis Lillee on Boxing Day

Test 915 – Australia v. West Indies at Melbourne, December 26-30th, 1981.
Australia win by 58 runs.

“Lillee! Lillee! Lillee! Kill! Kill! Kill!”
Give Dennis a lively Melbourne track,
And Lillee bloody will.

He’ll take down that Viv Richards,
He’ll take down Colin Croft,
He’ll take the Windies half apart,
And make their batting soft.

They still outscore Australia,
For whom Kim Hughes had starred,
But getting up to 2-0-1,
Had left West Indies scarred.

Holding’s always brilliant,
His fearsome seaming sprayed,
But for once the team of superstars,
Were just about out-played.

There was a fitting ending,
As Windies fell away,
An apt, as he was record holder,
Period of play.

Roberts, Garner, Holding,
Three batsmen (if you will),
By Lillee! Lillee! Lillee!
Killed, killed, killed.

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The Wasting

Test 914 – India v. England at Delhi, December 23rd-28th 1981

To play cricket, to play for one’s country,
The dreams they held as boys,
When bat and ball took precedence,
Above all other toys.

And then to reach the biggest stage,
Abandon one’s beliefs,
That winning, playing, sport is king,
That joy outweighs relief.

At Delhi there was nothing more,
Than bowling slow, forlorn,
As both approached 500 runs,
Another turgid draw.

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Records to Break

Test 913 – Australia v. Pakistan 3rd Test at Melbourne, December 11th-15th, 1981

Records to break in Melbourne,
With Lillee closing in,
He needs another five wickets,
When Pakistan begin.

He doesn’t get a single one,
Bruce Yardley takes the most,
Pakistan 500 up,
A mammoth score they post.

A record goes to Imran Khan,
1-4-4 test wickets,
Takes him past Fazal Mahmood,
In Pakistani cricket.

Yet the workload wasn’t really his,
Australia destroyed,
Iqbal Qasim picked up the slack,
And Pakistan were buoyed.

They’d struggled on the tour to date,
Done precious little winning,
The smashed the Aussies into bits,
And beat them by an innings.

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708 Minutes

Test 912 – India v. England Second Test at Bengaluru, December 9th-14th 1981

Gavaskar bats and bats and bats,
The men around support,
Gavaskar bats and bats and bats,
A master at his sport,

Gavaskar bats and bats and bats,
For not one day but two,
Gavaskar bats and bats and bats,
Its all he knows to do,

Gavaskar bats and bats and bats,
And offers not a chance,
Gavaskar bats and bats and bats,
A rock in bended stance,

Gavaskar bats and bats and bats,
So India do, too,
Gavaskar bats and bats and bats,
For near twelve hours through,

Gavaskar bats and bats and bats,
1-7-2 he scores,
Gavaskar bats and bats and bats,
A run fest, but a draw.

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From Grasp

Test 911 – India v England First Test at Mumbai, November 27th-December 1st 1981

To hold it fast, to let it go, to feel it ebb away,
Was England’s lot straight after lunch, on Day 2 at Bombay.

India had been dispatched for only 1-7-9
While Boycott and Tavare both looked set to bat for time,

From 95 for 2 they fell to all out 166,
Bamboozled by the spin and Doshi’s fairly simple tricks.

So India had earned a lead and made advantage tell,
Adding runs from everywhere as every wicket fell.

Then England started poorly, their chase of 2-4-1,
Before they’d reached not 50 runs, six of their batsmen gone,

Underwood and Willis then, came together at the last,
And put on 27 runs, of course it didn’t last.

Willis was the last man out in England’s 1-0-2,
One match down in the series and with plenty more to do.

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Greg Chappell Is A Monster

Test 910 – Australia v. Pakistan at Brisbane, November 27th-December 1st 1981.
Australia won by 10 wickets.

Greg Chappell is a monster,
Greg Chappell is a man,
Greg Chappell is a batsman
And the scourge of Pakistan.

He scored a double hundred,
His fourth three figure here,
And when he brought two hundred up,
A fan gave him a beer.

He took a sip and carried on,
Just to be caught next ball,
Lofting Bakht to Zaheer Abbas,
The sixth wicket to fall.

By then Australia had their lead,
And never let it free,
Pakistan bowled out again,
So they only needed three.

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Brawling And Balling

Test 909: Australia v. Pakistan at Perth, November 13th-17th 1981
Australia won by 286 runs.

You wouldn’t mess with Javed,
And you wouldn’t mess with Lillee,
But they messed with one another,
And it all looked rather silly.

Dennis brought his attitude,
Miandad brought his bat,
It had no place in cricket,
This fiery little spat.

And both appear part at fault,
If we must apportion blame,
To the mindless, fractious incident,
That dominates this game,

The match was little contest,
After Pakistan’s first knock,
They were skittled out for 62,
And reeled from the shock.

The Aussies put the thumbscrews on,
And set them 5-4-3,
And watch as six went in a row,
Spun out by Bruce Yardley.

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