On this day in 1975: The first Cricket World Cup begins

The 13th edition of the 50-over World Cup is just around the corner, with two-time champions India set to host the mega event later this year. While the fans are licking their lips at witnessing some intriguing clashes between the best sides in the world, we travel back memory lane to relive the first-ever World Cup match that took place on this very day in 1975.

It was only fitting that the ‘home of cricket’ – Lord’s, hosted the first-ever World Cup that saw England square off against India, laying the foundation of a glorious tournament that would entertain fans for decades to come. The home side, led by Mike Denness, elected to bat first after winning the toss in the historic clash.

England made a solid start to the match with a 54-run opening stand between John Jameson and Dennis Amiss, and while Jameson departed to become the first-ever batter to be dismissed in a World Cup match, his opening partner was in no mood to let go of the advantage. The prolific top-order batter smashed a brisk century, going into the history books as the first-ever centurion in World Cup matches.

His innings, coupled with half-centuries from Keith Fletcher and Chris Old, helped the hosts get to a daunting total of 334 runs in their 60 overs. It was always going to be an uphill battle for the Indian to scale the target, especially against a disciplined English bowling attack, but the visitors never even showed any intent to chase the target in their reply.

It turned out to be a mismatch of the highest proportions as Srinivas Venkataraghavan’s side got nowhere near the target, managing a paltry total of 132 runs in their allocated overs despite losing just three wickets. The home side went on to contest the semi-finals only to lose against arch-rivals Australia, who were toppled by the great West Indian team in a hard-fought contest in the summit clash, lifting the first-ever WC trophy.