Tour of India & Pakistan 1958-59 Captain: Gerry Alexander
Tenth West Indies Test tour
Second Test-playing tour of India and first of Pakistan by West Indies
(October 1958 - April 1959)
To tie in with the West Indies Cricket Board of Control AGM, the selectors chose their tour party earlier than expected, with Frank Worrell as captain. "It took me completely by surprise when I read it in the papers," he said, "I have not even written to my University yet to ask for time off". In the end he had to withdraw and this became the first time since the Second World War that West Indies played a Test series without any member of the three W's. The selectors paid Worrell the compliment of choosing two players in his place. John Holt joined the team as an extra batsman and as vice-captain; Wesley Hall heard he was chosen as Worrell's bowling replacement in August 1958 during a cricket tour of the United States organised by sports writer Brunell Jones. Hall went on to be the most successful bowler on the tour.
In July 1958 the West Indies Board announced that the four of the professional cricketers - Hunte, Ramadhin, Sobers and Smith - would not tour because of deadlocked negotiations over fees but, with the efforts of the Maharaj Kumar of Vizianagram, the matter was settled.
The most sensational moment of the tour came when Roy Gilchrist was sent home during the last match of the Indian portion of the tour. Gilchrist had been argumentative with his captain on and off the field and had already been suspended for the second Test with a "pulled muscle". The affair reached boiling point in the North Zone match when he bowled bouncers and beamers at Swaranjit Singh, in defiance of skipper Gerry Alexander. Supported by the manager and senior players, Alexander told him to get on the next plane home, and Gilchrist never represented West Indies again.
Other West Indies tours
To England 1957
To Australia 1960-61
Next tour of India
Next tour of Pakistan
Members of the Test tour party (17)
Opening batsmen John Holt, Robin Bynoe, Conrad Hunte.
Middle-order batsmen Basil Butcher, Collie Smith, Rohan Kanhai, Gary Sobers, Joe Solomon.
Wicket-keepers Gerry Alexander, Jackie Hendriks
Spin bowlers Lance Gibbs, Sonny Ramadhin, Willie Rodriguez
Fast bowlers Eric Atkinson, Roy Gilchrist, Wesley Hall, Jaswick Taylor.
F C M Alexander
E S Atkinson
B F Butcher
M R Bynoe
L R Gibbs
W W Hall
J L Hendriks
J K C Holt
C C Hunte
R B Kanhai
W V Rodriguez
O G Smith
G S Sobers
J S Solomon
J O Taylor
Regional representation :
B - Barbados (5)
BG - British Guiana (4)
Ja - Jamaica (5)
T - Trinidad (3)
Average age of team at time of first Test match
(28 November 1958) : 25 yrs 9 months.
Test Appearances made before the tour
Ramadhin 33, Sobers 19, Smith 18, Holt 10, Kanhai 10, Gilchrist 9, Alexander 7, Hunte 5, Gibbs 4, Atkinson 3, Taylor 1, Butcher 0, Bynoe 0, Hall 0, Hendriks 0, Rodriguez 0, Solomon 0.
Major S A Rahman
Liaison Officer in Pakistan
Berkeley Gaskin (British Guiana), Cyril Merry (Trinidad), Noel Pierce (Barbados), Johnny Groves (Jamaica) and Gerry Alexander (captain).
John Groves (1914-96) was Hon Secretary of the West Indies Board, which was based in Jamaica at the time.
The tour party was chosen in Trinidad on the concluding day of the home Test series between Pakistan and West Indies 1957-58.
Unavailable: Everton Weekes, Clyde Walcott, Denis Atkinson?
Tour Party Announced : 1 April 1958.
Not selected : Alfred Valentine.
Withdrawal: Frank Worrell (the original choice as captain) because he was studying at Manchester University. Alexander, originally vice-captain, took over the day after Worrell withdrew on 16 May.
John Holt and Wesley Hall were named after an extra selection meeting on 24 August.
At first, the extra meeting was to have chosen six players, that is, four to replace the professionals and two in place of Worrell. However, by 20 August the matter of tour fees for the professionals had been satisfactorily settled.
Time between selection and departure from West Indies
(1 April - 16 October)
Port Antonio T Avonmouth
London Q Bombay
On 9 October 1958 Atkinson, Bynoe and Hall sailed on the 'Golfito' from Barbados to Trinidad where they were joined at Port of Spain by Butcher, Gibbs, Solomon, Rodriguez and Taylor. They sailed on to Jamaica to pick up Alexander, Holt and Hendriks. Leaving Port Antonio on 16 October, the 'Golfito' sailed for Avonmouth docks.
The professional cricketers who had been playing league cricket in England - Gilchrist, Hunte, Kanhai, Ramadhin, Smith and Sobers - joined the group in England. The whole touring party flew from London to Bombay arriving on the afternoon of 2 November.
At the end of the Indian section of the tour the team went by road from Amritsar across the Wagah border into Pakistan and a coach drove them to Lahore Airport. They were flown to Karachi, arriving on the evening of 7 February.
They then had two days' practice on matting wickets.
Time spent in India
(2 November - 6 February)
Time spent in Pakistan
(7 February - 2 April)
Is this correct?
On-tour selection panel
Gerry Alexander (captain), John Holt (vice-captain), Berkeley Gaskin (manager), Sonny Ramadhin.
None. There was no major injury suffered on the tour and the most serious illnesses were chicken pox (Taylor) and gastric illness (Hendriks and others).
Gilchrist did not tour Pakistan but was not replaced. He travelled by train to Bombay on Tuesday 17 February before flying to England where he remained, as he had a professional playing contract with Middleton Cricket Club.
Won 185 r
Indian Board President's XI
Cricket Club of India
INDIA First Test
INDIA Second Test
WON 203 r
Won inns 152 r
Bihar Governor's XI
Won 160 r
INDIA Third Test
WON inns 336 r
Won inns 17 r
Won 278 r
INDIA Fourth Test
WON 295 r
Won 10 w
INDIA Fifth Test
Won 73 r
PAKISTAN First Test
LOST 10 w
PAKISTAN Second Test
LOST 41 r
Won 9 w
Won 10 w
PAKISTAN Third Test
WON inns 156 r
� not first-class
Time spent in India before First Test:
(2 November - 28 November)
Time from end of final Test (in Pakistan) until departure from Bombay 3 days
(31 March - 3 April)
Test appearances on tour
8 - Alexander, Butcher, Hall, Kanhai, Smith, Sobers
7 - Holt, Solomon
6 - Hunte
5 - Atkinson
4 - Gibbs, Gilchrist, Ramadhin
2 - Taylor
1 - Bynoe
0 - Hendriks, Rodriguez..
• Garfield Sobers hit three centuries in the Test matches.
• Rohan Kanhai exceeded 1000 runs for the Indian tour in the last match at Amritsar.
• Butcher, Holt, Hunte and Sobers also exceeded 1000 runs on the whole tour.
• Wesley Hall took a hat-trick in the third Test against Pakistan at Lahore. Hall had 46 wickets in the Test matches and 87 on the whole tour.
Other first-clas matches
ϯ Minor matches
Return to West Indies
Bombay Q London
Avonmouth T Kingston
On 2 April the team flew from Lahore to Karachi and on to Bombay.
The next day they caught a flight to London and arrived there on 4 April. The professional cricketers went to their league engagements while the remainder took a passage on the banana boat 'Camito' from Avonmouth.
Atkinson and Bynoe disembarked at Bridgetown and the other seven players (Alexander, Butcher, Hendriks, Holt, Solomon, Rodriguez and Taylor) arrived at Port of Spain on 17 April. The Guianese flew home the next day. The Jamaicans reached Kingston when the 'Camito' berthed there on the morning of 20 April.
Time away from West Indies
(16 October to 17 April)
Published accounts of the tour
"Cricket Ups and Downs" Qamaruddin Butt.
“The Happy Warrior” (biography of Collie Smith) by Ken Chaplin (Dominion Publishing, 1960)