Viv Richards : biography
Viv Richards' career performance graph. Sir Isaac Vivian Alexander Richards, KNH, OBE (born 7 March 1952), is a former West Indian cricketer. Popularly known as Viv (or King Viv), he is almost unequivocally regarded as the greatest One Day International (ODI) batsman of all time, as also the most destructive and feared ever, and as one of the very greatest to have ever played the game.http://www.espncricinfo.com/magazine/content/story/537629.htmlhttp://www.espncricinfo.com/magazine/content/story/472547.html Richards was voted one of the five Cricketers of the Century in 2000, by a 100-member panel of experts, along with Sir Donald Bradman, Sir Garfield Sobers, Sir Jack Hobbs and Shane Warne. In February 2002, Richards was judged by Wisden Cricketers' Almanack to have played the best ODI innings of all time. In December 2002, he was chosen by Wisden as the greatest ODI batsman of all time, as well as the third greatest Test batsman of all time, after Sir Don Bradman and Sachin Tendulkar.
Richards made his Test match debut for the West Indian cricket team in 1974 against India in Bangalore. He made an unbeaten 192 in the second Test of the same series in New Delhi. The West Indies saw him as a strong opener and he kept his profile up in the early years of his promising career.
In his Test career, he scored 8,540 runs in 121 Test matches at an average of 50.23 (including 24 centuries). Richards also scored 5 centuries in World Series Cricket between 1977–79. These are not recognised by the ICC as "official" Test centuries, but the high standard of cricket played in this series means that they can arguably be ranked alongside his 24 Test centuries. Richards won 27 of 50 matches as a Test captain, and lost only 8. He is also the scorer of the fastest-ever Test century, from just 56 balls against England in Antigua during the 1986 tour. He hit 84 sixes in Test cricket. His highest innings of 291 is sixth on the list of West Indies' highest individual scores.
In 1975 Richards helped the West Indies to win the inaugural Cricket World Cup final, a feat he later described as the most memorable of his career.. Fox Sports. 14 December 2012. He starred in the field, running out Alan Turner, Ian Chappell and Greg Chappell. The West Indies were again able to win the following World Cup in 1979, thanks to a Richards century in the final at Lord's, and Richards believes that on both occasions, despite internal island divisions, the Caribbean came together. BBC online. He was until 2005 the only man to score a century and take 5 wickets in the same one-day international, against New Zealand at Dunedin in 1986–87. He rescued his side from a perilous position at Old Trafford in 1984 and, in partnership with Michael Holding, smashed 189 to win the game off his own bat.
1976 was perhaps Richards' finest year: he scored 1710 runs, at an astonishing average of 90.00, with seven centuries in 11 Tests. This achievement is all the more remarkable considering he missed the second Test at Lord's after contracting glandular fever; yet he returned to score his career-best 291 at the Oval later in the summer. This tally stood as the world record for most Test runs by a batsman in a single calendar year for 30 years until broken by Mohammad Yousuf of Pakistan on 30 November 2006.
Richards captained the West Indies in 50 Test matches from 1984 to 1991. He is the only West Indies captain never to lose a Test series, and it is said that his fierce will to win contributed to this achievement. His captaincy was, however, not without controversy: one incident was his aggressive, "finger-flapping" appeal leading to the incorrect dismissal of England batsman Rob Bailey in the Barbados Test in 1990, which was described by Wisden as "at best undignified and unsightly. At worst, it was calculated gamesmanship". This behaviour would nowadays be penalised according to Section 2.5. of the Rules of Conduct of the ICC Code of Conduct.http://www.icc-cricket.com/icc/rules/code-of-conduct-for-players-and-officials.pdf
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