|Test Cricket Tours - West Indies to India 1948-49|
Tour of India
1948-49 Captain: John Goddard
West Indies’ fifth Test
First Test-playing tour of India by West Indies
(September 1948 - March 1949)
On 21 January 1948 the Australian Cricket Board
declined an invitation to tour the West Indies since they were already
committed to their 1948 tour of England
and visiting South Afica in 1949-50.
Therefore the West Indies Board arranged their first tour of India which
resulted in a one-nil victory for the visiting side. Both teams and particularly the visitors
compiled massive totals of runs so that there was insufficient time to
complete four of the Test matches.
Weekes led the way with four consecutive centuries to follow his
hundred in 1947-48 against England.
At the end of the tour the team returned to the
Brabourne Stadium in Bombay
for an additional 12-a-side charity match after which Weekes received a
presentation of a silver plaque and 3001 rupees to mark his achievement.
Frank Worrell was in dispute with the West Indies
Board of Control and refused to tour. In any case the Board would not to
consider him for the tour because of his lack of discipline.
Several of the West Indian players were unfit at one
stage or another; the President of the Indian Board, Mr Anthony de Mello took
it upon himself to cable his West Indian counterpart, Karl Nunes, asking for
a reinforcement in time for the fourth Test. The Board sent George Mudie with
awkward consequences (see below).
The players were far from satisfied with the travel
arrangements (long overnight rail journeys) and accommodation in second-rate
hotels, as a result of de Mello’s parsimony.
In the face of strong complaints the Indian Board relented late in the
tour and afforded air travel.
West Indies tours
tour of India
Members of the Test tour party (16)
Opening batsmen:George Carew, Allan Rae, Jeffrey
Middle-order batsmen: Clyde
Walcott, Everton Weekes John Goddard, Jimmy Cameron, George Headley, Ken
Wicket-keepers:Bob Christiani, Clifford McWatt.
All-rounders: Denis Atkinson, Gerry Gomez
Fast bowlers:Prior Jones, John Trim.
RHB deputy WK
J D C
LHB second WK
C L Walcott
E D Weekes
Regional representation :
- British Guiana (3)
Ja – Jamaica (4)
T – Trinidad (4)
age of team at time of first Test
28 yrs 10 months
Test Appearances made before the tour
Headley 20, Gomez 6, Stollmeyer 5, Christiani 4, Ferguson 4, Goddard 4, Walcott 4, Weekes 4, Carew 3, Jones 1, Rickards 1, Trim 1, Atkinson 0, Cameron 0, McWatt 0, Rae 0.
The manager, Donald Lacy, was
Hon Secretary and Treasurer of the West Indies Board of Contol between 1945
and 1954, having previously been the Secretary of Jamaica Cricket Association.
He died in 1991.
F A C Clairmonte, C Marley, E J Marsden and skipper J D C Goddard met at
On 14 May 24 players were asked
to hold themselves available for selection for the final team of 15. These
included H P Bayley, B H Pairaudeau (British
Guiana), A Ganteaume, R Tang Choon (Trinidad),
Irving Iffla, E S M Kentish, H H Johnson (Jamaica),
J H Lucas and C B Williams (Barbados),
none of whom was selected.
Goddard was appointed captain
and Lacy manager on 27 May 1948.
Unavailable: Hines Johnson (for business reasons he had
to ask for terms which the Board could not entertain); Irvin Iffla (another Jamaican, with
education to complete); Frank Worrell (who rejected the financial terms,
though Ivo Tennant and Jeffrey Stollmeyer have written that in any case Worrell
was not chosen for disciplinary reasons).
Tour Party Announced : 9 August 1948.
Veteran George Carew was
chosen, though not among the original list of 24 who were asked if available.
Cameron, the younger brother of John Cameron, vice-captain on the 1939 tour
of England, was a student
in Canada who had played
only two first-class matches for Jamaica before the tour.
The original announcement of
the tour party consisted of 15 names. Sixteen had been selected but the 16th
name was held back until the Indian Board agreed to finance a team of that
size. Then Ken Rickards could be added to the group on 11 August.
Not selected : Andy
Ganteaume was the most notable omission; he had just made a century in his
selection and departure from Jamaica:
(9 August - 21
Kingston T Avonmouth
London Q Bombay
The Guianese arrived in
Trinidad by ship on 17 September 1948, while Goddard, Carew, Walcott and
Weekes flew to Piarco Airport, Trinidad,
on 19 September. The assembled party left Trinidad on 21 September on the 'ss Cavina' for Jamaica. They reached Kingston on 25 September and stayed for two
days. The team sailed to England because of big concessions the West
Indies Board had obtained on the passage in the banana boat 'Cavina', which left Kingston
on 27 September for Bowden,
(where Headley boarded) and Port Antonio.
The ‘Cavina’ reached Avonmouth, near Bristol, on 12 October. Cameron joined up
with the team in England
where he was a student. The team stayed
at the Kimberley Hotel, New
Oxford Street, London.
After a few days in England the team flew by an Air India International
flight from London Airport (Heathrow) on 16 October via Geneva and Cairo to Bombay, arriving at
Santa Cruz Aerodrome at 6.30 on the morning of 17 October. They resided at
the Cricket Club of India until Thursday 21st, then drove to Baroda.
All the team kit including
clothing from Simpson’s of Piccadilly worth £1000 was found to be missing
when the crates, which were brought out to Bombay
on the steamer Canton, were opened.
Time spent in India
(17 October - 5 March)
On-tour selection panel
John Goddard, Jeffrey Stollmeyer and Donald Lacy. Gerry Gomez was later added to this
George Headley with a chipped
rib bone did not play at all after 29 November except once when he scored a
century against a Ceylon Schools side; Rickards was in hospital with typhoid
fever; Trim, Atkinson, Ferguson
and Stollmeyer caught chicken pox. Mr
AS de Mello, President of the Indian Board, called for an extra player on the
touring party's behalf, preferably Frank Worrell (although Worrell had
already been ruled out of the tour) or a fast bowler (although both Hines Johnson
and Esmond Kentish were unfit).
The West Indies Board chose George Mudie on 11 January. They gave him a fitness test, kitted him out,
arranged time off from his work with the public works department in Kingston, and flew him out to London on Saturday 15 January. But by the following Monday, manager Donald
Lacy had sent a cable saying that a replacement player was not needed, and
Mudie had to fly back to Kingston without getting anywhere near India.
INDIA First Test
Frontier Province C-in-C's XI
INDIA Second Test
Club of India
of Central Provinces XI
Bengal Governor's XI
INDIA Third Test
of Bihar's XI
inns 98 r
inns 200 r
INDIA Fourth Test
WON inns 193 r
INDIA Fifth Test
inns 22 r
XI (festival match)
† not first-class
Time spent in India
before First Test: 24
(17 October - 10 November)
Time from end of final Test until departure from India 25
(8 February - 5 March)
Test appearances on tour
5 - Cameron,
Christiani, Goddard, Gomez, Jones, Rae, Walcott,
3 - Ferguson
2 - Trim
1 - Carew,
0 - McWatt, Rickards.
Weekes' sequence of Test scores, following 141 against England in March were : 128 at Delhi, 194 at Bombay, 162
and 101 at Calcutta, and 90 at Madras (when he was
mistakenly given run out).
• With 56 in
his next Test innings he went on to his seventh consecutive fifty, which has
never been equalled.
• In the fourth
Test Rae and Stollmeyer struck an
opening partnership of 239, a new West Indian record.
• West Indians
scored 11 centuries in the series and averaged 47 runs per wicket.
• George Carew
scored a century at Karachi, the first to be
made in first-class cricket in Pakistan.
Other first-class matches
ϯ Minor matches
Return to West Indies
Bombay Q London
Avonmouth T Kingston
After the Fifth Test the West Indians made a tour of Ceylon, then left Colombo
by air on 1 March flying back to Bombay
for a charity match. On 5 March they flew from Bombay
at 3.30 am, via Basra, Cairo
and Geneva, arriving at London Airport
(Heathrow) on 6 March. There were two inches of snow on the ground - some of
the tourists had never seen snow before.
After a short holiday and sightseeing in London, most
of the team went from Paddington Station to Avonmouth and sailed on the 'Bayano' on 10 March, reaching
Kingston on 25 March, then flying to their final destinations. Rae, a law student, and Weekes, who would
be playing for Bacup in 1949, remained in England. Stollmeyer and Gomez stayed on to complete
some business until 24 March when they sailed on the 'ss Ariguani' for Trinidad.
Time away from West Indies 180 days
(27 September to 25
March arrived back in Jamaica)
The Indian Board was
responsible for the West Indians’ tour expenses and evidently economised on
travel and accommodation to the detriment of the players’ comfort. The plan was for the West Indian Board of
Control to receive a share of the tour profits. Although it got £500 profit
made in Ceylon, it
received none from India;
but the Indian Board of Control was said to have made 94 000 rupees (£7000)
of profit on the tour.
accounts of the tour
" West Indies
Cricketers' Tour of India"
Sports & Pastimes of Madras (contemporary pre-tour brochure)
"Jeffrey Stollmeyer's Diary:
The West Indies in India
1948-49" Jeffrey Stollmeyer (2004, Royards
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