Almanac Cricket History – Australia v Pakistan at the Adelaide Oval




It’s pretty amazing that it’s 30 years since Australia last played Pakistan in a Test match at Adelaide Oval. In fact, they have met in the City of Churches only four times dating back to the 1972/73 series. Australia won that first clash but the following three have all been draws. Here’s a brief look at each of those matches.


Ian Chappell’s Australian team was on the rise following on their 1972 Ashes tour. In the First Test against Pakistan played in Adelaide over Christmas, the Aussies dispatched the visitors for a modest 257 which would have been far worse but for a gritty seventh wicket partnership of 104 between skipper Intikab Alam (64) and wicketkeeper Wasim Bari (72). Lillee and Massie shared eight wickets. In reply, Ian Chappell’s 196 was his highest Test score and comprised one third of Australia’s massive 585 scored at a rollicking 5.3 per over. Rod Marsh chipped in with 118 and Ross Edwards contributed 89. After a steady start to their second innings, Pakistan fell away to be all out for 214 (Ashley Mallett 8/59) to give Australia a win by an innings and 114 runs. You can see the full scorecard by clicking here.


The teams were back four years later, again playing over the Christmas Day period. Pakistan batted first for 272 built mostly around 85 by Zaheer Abbas and 48 to Imran Khan. The wickets were shared around with Kerry O’Keefe taking the figures with 3/42. Australia replied with 454 on the back of Ian Davis (105) and Doug Walters (107). Mushtaq Mohammad was the pick of the bowlers with 4/58. Pakistan fought back to score 466 the second time around with Asif Iqbal (152) and Zaheer Abbas (101) leading the way. Set 285 to win, the Australians got to 6/261 (GS Chappell 70, Walters 51). Many thought that Australia threw away a great chance to win the match through very slow, defensive batting at the end by Gary Cosier and Rod Marsh. Interestingly, there was no Player of the Match awarded. See the full scoreboard by clicking here.


Adelaide Oval hosted the Third Test of the 1983/84 series in early December. Australia’s imposing 465 (Wessels 179, Border 117, Hafeez 5/167)) looked good until Pakistan responded with a mammoth 624 (Mohsin Khan 149, Qasim Omar 113, Javed Miandad 131, Lillee 6/171 off 50 overs!). But it must have been a real belter of a wicket with Australia reaching 7/310 (Kim Hughes 106, Border 66) as the match fizzled out to a draw. Although he scored the smallest of six centuries in the game, Kim Hughes somehow picked up Player of the Match. See the full card here.


Thirty years ago, Pakistan started with a modest 257 (Javed Miandad 52, Wasim Akram 52, Carl Rackemann 4/40). Australia hardly excelled with 341 in reply (Dean Jones 116, Mark Taylor 77). Pakistan was in trouble at 4/22 in their second dig but were rescued by Imran Khan (136) and Wasim Akram (123) to reach 9/387 (Merv Hughes 5/111), setting the home team 304 to win. Never in the hunt, Australia compiled a slow 6/233 (Dean Jones 121) to force the draw. Wasim Akram (52, 123, 5/100 and 1/29) was a clear Player of the Match. To see the scoreboard, click here.


So here we are, 30 years later with a day/night, pink ball contest ahead of us. Unfortunately the long-range weather forecast is not too flash but, given sufficient playing hours, something tells me that it won’t be another draw.


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About Ian Hauser

A relaxed, Noosa-based retiree with a (very) modest sporting CV. A loyal Queenslander, especially when it comes to cricket and rugby league. Enjoys travel, coffee and cake, reading, and has been known to appreciate a glass or three of wine. One of Footy Almanac's online editors who enjoys the occasional editing opportunity to assist aspiring writers.


  1. Mark 'Swish' Schwerdt says

    Thanks Ian.

    Re 1976 – I was one of the many. That was the game where Thommo and Alan Turner collided, leaving Australia a bowler short, which the visitors took advantage of in their second dig. Lillee and O’Keeffe bowled 100 8-ball overs between them in that innings, taking 5/163 and 3/166 respectively. Gus Gilmour was next with just 14 overs.

    According to my scorecard, Asif Iqbal was Player of the Match, despite his first innings duck. The prelude to the non-run chase and some interesting crowd involvement. I was sitting under one of the sunshades on the hill behind the sightscreen. Thommo/ Turner collide

  2. You beat me ‘Swish’. I was going to mention the infamous on field collision during Pakistan’s first dig.

    Though not as momentous, Gary Gilmour spent a deal of Pakistan’s second innings being unable to bowl due to gout. Thus for a period of time we were two bowlers. Gilmour had a sterling 1975-76 season, following the 1975 World Cup and tour of England, but his game fell away badly in the 1976-77 season. The gout in Adelaide a potender of things to come.


  3. An interesting read, Ian. Thanks.

  4. Daryl Schramm says

    An excellent post. Enjoyed reviewing to scoreboard. I remember aspects of all tests, especially Imran and Akram fight back with the bat. Shutting up shop in 76/77 was most un-Australian.

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