Almanac (Sports) History: It all happened on January 21 (with a bit of music thrown in)


Sir Everton Weekes – a doyen of West Indies cricket (Image source: Cricinfo)


In the lazy days of summer when not too many compelling things occupy the mind, it’s interesting to look back over the years to remember just what happened on particular dates, whether in history, sport, music or whatever. I had a bit of a rumble through the records this week to see what happened on January 21 and here’s some of what I found.




Did you know that Clyde Walcott, Everton Weekes and Jim Laker all made their Test debuts in the same match? Neither did I! In fact there were 12 debutants in that match, the First Test in the 1948 series between West Indies and England at Bridgetown. Walcott (8 and 16) and Weekes (35 and 25) hardly set the world alight but Laker (7/103 and 2/95) certainly made the punters sit up and take notice. See the full scorecard here.


Jumping forward to 1964, Bhagwath Chandrasekhar made his debut for India against England in Bombay. He took a handy 4/67. Chandrasekhar, who went on to play 58 Test matches, is one of only two players in Test history to take more wickets (242) than score runs (167)! It was an era of great spinners for India with Prasanna, Bedi and Venkataraghaven completing a quartet which dominated in the 1960s and 70s. See Chandrasekhar’s career statistics here.


But the award for the doozy on this date, go back to 1991 when England’s David Gower and John Morris hired a Tiger Moth on the Gold Coast to buzz their teammates on the third day of the tourists’ match against Queensland at Carrara. They were subsequently fined by a less than impressed team management! Killjoys! There should be more of it.


To read more about these and other cricket stories associated with today’s date click here.




In one of the more sensational moments in Australian tennis history, ‘Superbrat’ John McEnroe was disqualified in the fourth round of the 1990 Australian Open when leading two sets to one over Swede Mikael Pernfors. He may have been the best player of his generation (remember those beautifully soft hands?) but this was one occasion when the administrators chalked up a win over the feisty American.

Here’s the context of McEnroe’s disqualification. Now watch all the ‘action’ below.






And to conclude, it was on this day back in 1978 that The Bee Gees’ album Saturday Night Fever reached #1 and stayed there for a whopping 24 weeks! Luxuriate in the video and remember an era of big hair, lots of bling, glossy outfits and Barry’s inimitable falsetto. Read a bit of the context here.




The Tigers (Covid) Almanac 2020 will be published in 2021. It will have all the usual features – a game by game account of the Tigers season – and will also include some of the best Almanac writing from the Covid winter.  Pre-order HERE


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