First official Test-playing tour of Sri Lanka by India
(August - September 1985)
On their first official Test tour of Sri Lanka, the Indians lost the Test series and a one-day international. It was partly due to a lack of proper preparation and practice, which contrasted with the thoroughness of the Sri Lankans, and partly due to overconfidence and a casual approach.
The tour was planned to commence on 5 September but the date was brought forward to 27 August.
Because of the threat of ethnic violence strict security was in force throughout the tour, the last to be safely completed on the island until 1990.
India might have expected to have the best of the one-day series as 1983 World Cup champions, winners of the B & H World Series Cup in March 1985 and of the Sharjah Cup in April. However, the umpires called off play in the 3rd ODI owing to bad light with the home side 32 for 4, which left the series tied at one match-all.
There was more umpiring controversy in the Test series and the Sri Lankans took the 2nd Test decisively as doubtful decisions went against Vengsarkar, Azharuddin and Gavaskar, who had opted to bat in the middle order instead of opening. In the 3rd Test some blatant time-wasting saved the match for Sri Lankawho won its first Test series.As the Indians saw the series slipping away, complaints about the umpiring became more frequent, and a diplomatic initiative by politicians was needed to calm the touring party.
B S Bedi (chairman), Hanumant Singh, Kripal Singh, Ambar Roy, C G Borde and M M Sood.
Unavailable:none known. Patil?
Tour Party Announced : 8 August 1985.
Not selected Roger Binny, Madan Lal and TA Sekhar because Ghai was picked with the potential to be the fastest bowler in India.
Kirmani was dropped after Viswanath’s performance in the World Championship of Cricket in 1985
Time between selection and departure from India
(8 August - 20 August)
All the players assembled in Bombay by 17 August except Srikkanth. The professionals - Shastri, Vengsarkar, Chetan Sharma, Rajinder Singh Ghai and Amarnath - arrived in Bombay from league commitments in England on 14 August, as had Gavaskar and Rajput the week before.Kapil Dev was delayed by an attack of viral fever.
On 20 August 1985 the team flew out of Bombay and landed in Colombo on the eve of their opening match.
Time spent in Sri Lanka
(20 August - 24 September)
Kapil Dev (captain), Shastri (vice-captain), Jaisimha (manager)
R M H Binny
Mohinder Amarnath was suffering from dizzy spells and Ghai injured.
The management asked for Roger Binny to fly in and strengthen the squad. He was one of 8 stand-bys for the tour and was in England for the Bhopal victims' relief fund.He arrived in Bombay on 31 August and in Colombo on Tuesday 3 September to take the place of Ghai (injured)
Sivaramakrishnan injured a finger on his bowling hand early in the tour.
•Vengsarkar (98*) in the first Test held up Sri Lanka long enough to save the match.
•Srikkanth, Gavaskar and Amarnath scored fifties on the third day of the second Test but it was Kapil Dev’s innings of 78 that made Sri Lanka fear they would not force a victory
•Amarnath struck a century in the third Test match
•Kapil Dev became India's leading wicket-taker (267 wickets) when Silva was caught at Kandy.
Other first-class matches
ϯ Minor matches
§ One-day internationals
Return to India
The team flew out of Colombo on 24 September and arrived in Bombay rather than Madras where a 12-hour Tamil Nadu bandh and mass fast to express anguish at the suffering of the Tamils was taking place.All government institutions and public transport facilities were closed.
The tourists then went straight to their home areas to play in the next round of matches.
Time away from India
35 days(20 August to 24 September)
No guarantee money was paid. The Sri Lankan Board picked up all the expenses, paying the players 2000 rupees a week besides a set tour fee.