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World Cup Cricket 1979, England
Dates: 9 June 1979 to 23 June 1979
Four years later (1975 - first World Cup) the second World Cup was played again in England. For the first time, the 'junior' counties played their own qualifying tournament, a process which saw Sri Lanka and Canada progress to the World Cup proper. The tournament (which was conducted along the same lines as in 1975) was played soon after the 'peace' agreement between the Establishment game and Kerry Packer's breakaway World Series Cricket: things were still rather confused, and West Indies and Pakistan included all their Packer players, while England and Australia did not.
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World Cup Cricket 1979
The second World Cup, officially called The Prudential Cup, proved, like the first in 1975, a great success, and again West Indies carried off the title. Unlike four years earlier, it was not blessed throughout with blissful sunshine during the fortnight it was in progress - June 9 to June 23.
Nevertheless, the three Saturdays provided fine weather and there was only one bad period - June 13, 14, 15 - when not a ball could be bowled in the match between West Indies and Sri Lanka at The Oval. The ground at Old Trafford was also affected, but two days sufficed for England to beat Canada in a low-scoring match.
Again eight countries took part, and from a cricketer's point of view it was a shame that once more South Africa were left in the cold. To fill the two remaining places, a separate tournament was organised among associate members of the International Cricket Conference. From this emerged Sri Lanka, who took part in 1975, and Canada.
The matches were confined to one innings of 60 overs for each side. No bowler was allowed more than twelve overs per innings and the umpires applied strict interpretation in regard to wides and bumpers to prevent negative bowling.
The Prudential Assurance Company put £250,000 in the kitty and the gate receipts from the World Cup came to £359,700, almost double the £188,000 for the first competition. The total attendance last summer was 132,000 compared with 160,000 four years earlier, the drop being almost entirely due to the bad weather. The surplus, distributed to the full and associate members of the International Cricket Conference, came to £350,000.
Prizemoney amounted to £25,900. West Indies, the winners, received the Prudential Cup and £10,000; England, runners-up, £4,000; Pakistan and New Zealand, losing semi-finalists, £2,000 each; and winners of group matches £500 each. There were also Man of the Match awards: £300 to Vivian Richards (West Indies) in the final, £200 each in the semi-finals, and £100 for the nominated player in each group match.
At their meeting which followed the World Cup, the International Cricket Conference agreed to make the competition a four-yearly event with the 1983 tournament again being staged in England. The first World Cup, officially called The Prudential Cup, proved an outstanding success. Blessed by perfect weather, ideal conditions prevailed. Altogether fifteen single innings matches, each confined to 60 overs, were played in England between June 7 and June 21. There were a few one-sided contests among some tremendous and keenly fought struggles. The highlight came in the Final at Lord's where Australia and West Indies were in combat from 11am until 8.45pm when The Duke of Edinburgh presented the Cup to Clive Lloyd, the West Indies captain.
Eight countries took part, but unfortunately not South Africa. The Prudential put £100,000 in the kitty and the overall takings came to more than £200,000 with an aggregate attendance of 158,000. Lord's was packed for the final with 26,000 present and receipts, a record for one day, of £66,000. The winners received £4,000. Australia, runners-up, £2,000 and the losing semi-finalists, England and New Zealand, £1,000 each.
The profits from the competition were distributed: 10 per cent to the United Kingdom and 7½ per cent to each of the seven other participants. The balance went to the inaugurators, the International Cricket Conference, to distribute at their discretion to the non-participating associated member countries, the International coaching fund and the reserve account for the promotion of the next International World Cup.
When the I.C.C. met in London towards the end of June member countries were invited to submit ideas for the next World Cup. India had already said that they were keen to act as hosts, but several members thought it was hard to beat England as the venue.
The main view for this reasoning was the longer period of daylight in England in June when 60 overs for each side can be completed the same day.
Cricket World Cup 1979 Finals Score Board
West Indies beat England by 92 runs
Man of the Match: IVA Richards
England won the toss and decided to field
Umpires: HD Bird & BJ Meyer.
West Indies Team: CG Greenidge, DL Haynes, IVA Richards, AI Kallicharran, CH Lloyd, CL King, DL Murray, AME Roberts, J Garner, MA Holding, CEH Croft.
England Team: JM Brearley, G Boycott, DW Randall, GA Gooch, DI Gower, IT Botham, W Larkins, PH Edmonds, CM Old, RW Taylor, M Hendrick.
Summary of 1979 World Cup
Group A: England v Australia at Lord's - June 9, 1979
Group B: India v West Indies at Birmingham - June 9,
Group B: New Zealand v Sri Lanka at Nottingham - June
Group A: Australia v Pakistan at Nottingham - June 13,
Group A: England v Canada at Manchester - June 13, 1979
Group B: India vs New Zealand at Leeds - June 13, 1979
Group B: Sri Lanka v West Indies at The Oval - June 13,
Group A: Australia v Canada at Birmingham - June 16,
Group A: England v Pakistan at Leeds - June 16, 1979
Group B: India v Sri Lanka at Manchester - June 16, 1979
Group B: New Zealand v West Indies at Nottingham - June
Semi-Final: England v New Zealand at Manchester - June
Semi-Final: Pakistan v West Indies at The Oval - June
Final: England v West Indies at Lord's - June 23, 1979
By Nishanth Gopinathan.
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