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Cricket What-Ifs

wpdavid

Hall of Fame Member
To be fair, SA was, for all intents and purposes already excluded prior to the agreement.

SA had not played any international cricket since 1970 and the Gleneagles Agreement was in 1977.

A more interesting question is what would have happened if South Africa had been allowed to play until 1977?

People like Clive Rice would have played Tests and Eddie Barlow would have captained South Africa in Tests.

We would probably have seen widespread anti-apartheid protests in Australia, England, and especially New Zealand, if SA had still toured. And how would they have fared if they had been invited to the 1975 World Cup?

They'd have declined the invitation, as they hadn't been interested in playing against the non-white countries at any point before their isolation and certainly wouldn't have been willing to play against them in something that was viewed to be as insignificant as the first WC.

However, their mid-1970s series against Australia would be widely regarded as one of the greatest ever.
 

wpdavid

Hall of Fame Member
Regarding the Warne and McGrath questions: two each and a comfortable Aus series win respectively.

In the former situation, the 2005 Ashes is still regarded as one of the greatest ever series. Not so in the latter.
 

Marius

State Captain
They'd have declined the invitation, as they hadn't been interested in playing against the non-white countries at any point before their isolation and certainly wouldn't have been willing to play against them in something that was viewed to be as insignificant as the first WC.

However, their mid-1970s series against Australia would be widely regarded as one of the greatest ever.
No, I think things could have got interesting. The players would probably have been more than happy to play against non-white teams, while there would have been pressure from the government to decline the invitation.

South African cricket teams were dominated by English-speakers who were Generally more liberal than their Afrikaner counterparts. In the early 1970s, in a warm-up match for the aborted 1971-1972 tour of Australia, Denis Lindsay, Mike Procter (and I think Barry Richards) led a walk-off of the team they were in. They said they wanted two non-white players to be selected for the upcoming tour of Australia.

Perhaps we could see a non-sanctioned South African XI (without the support of the SA board) playing in the World Cup?
 

Hurricane

Hall of Fame Member
I don't have any famous what ifs but instead an insignificant one in the scheme of things.

What if Martin Crowe wasn't obsessed with straight drives? Would Geoff Howarth have been run out by the ball deflecting off the bowlers hand for 40 when he seemed set to make a career saving century.
Instead his fate was sealed by the end of the next test.
 

wpdavid

Hall of Fame Member
No, I think things could have got interesting. The players would probably have been more than happy to play against non-white teams, while there would have been pressure from the government to decline the invitation.

South African cricket teams were dominated by English-speakers who were Generally more liberal than their Afrikaner counterparts. In the early 1970s, in a warm-up match for the aborted 1971-1972 tour of Australia, Denis Lindsay, Mike Procter (and I think Barry Richards) led a walk-off of the team they were in. They said they wanted two non-white players to be selected for the upcoming tour of Australia.

Perhaps we could see a non-sanctioned South African XI (without the support of the SA board) playing in the World Cup?
They'd be brave boys to do that.

I do remember hearing about the walk-off. I thought it was just that they wanted non-whites to be considered for selection rather than having a quota of two, but I'll readily concede that you probably know more about it than I do.

In answer to your original question, had they been able to compete in the first WC, I think they'd probably have won it. Beyond the sheer quality of the players available, the number of world class all-rounders in the side would have made them strong favourites.
 

Jono

Virat Kohli (c)
another thought; what if it doesn't rain during south africa's innings?
Yep. I was actually going to ask that but I think people have considered that a lot (i.e. SA were unlucky etc.). But no one mentions that regardless of the rain all Behardien needed to do was take the catch and Luggage is out. Considering it was Luggage who hit the winning runs, pretty massive dropped catch.
 

Marius

State Captain
They'd be brave boys to do that.

I do remember hearing about the walk-off. I thought it was just that they wanted non-whites to be considered for selection rather than having a quota of two, but I'll readily concede that you probably know more about it than I do.

In answer to your original question, had they been able to compete in the first WC, I think they'd probably have won it. Beyond the sheer quality of the players available, the number of world class all-rounders in the side would have made them strong favourites.
Yeah, not sure that would actually happen, but it's a possibility - not probable but maybe possible.

EDIT: Here's an account of the walk-off:

http://www.sahistory.org.za/archive...-against-apartheid-after-just-one-ball-bowled
 
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Red

The normal awards that everyone else has
What if Glenn McGrath didn't choose the caravan/cricket option?

Would that Aust team have been half as good?
 

wpdavid

Hall of Fame Member
Yeah, not sure that would actually happen, but it's a possibility - not probable but maybe possible.

EDIT: Here's an account of the walk-off:

South African cricketers walk out in protest against apartheid after just one ball is bowled | South African History Online

Yeah, I also found it after the earlier comments. The headline is misleading, as they weren't protesting against apartheid as such. It was more about being able to continue their test careers rather than any sort of moral stand.
 

Marius

State Captain
Yeah, I also found it after the earlier comments. The headline is misleading, as they weren't protesting against apartheid as such. It was more about being able to continue their test careers rather than any sort of moral stand.
Yeah, perhaps but a relatively brave stand in the prevailing climate of South Africa at the time.

How many prominent sportsmen are ever brave enough to speak out against wrongdoing and atrocities, or even make a political statement?

Look at the trouble Moeen got in last year for his Gaza wristbands, or Tommie Smith and John Carlos at the 1968 Olympics.
 

wpdavid

Hall of Fame Member
Yeah, perhaps but a relatively brave stand in the prevailing climate of South Africa at the time.

How many prominent sportsmen are ever brave enough to speak out against wrongdoing and atrocities, or even make a political statement?

Look at the trouble Moeen got in last year for his Gaza wristbands, or Tommie Smith and John Carlos at the 1968 Olympics.

Sounds like an idea for a separate thread. Flower and Olonga's protest at the 2003 WC springs to mind.
 

Burgey

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What if Shane Watson wasn't injured before the start of the 2006-07 Ashes series, and bats at six behind that Aussie line up, allowing him to play bowl more and bat like a hard hitting all rounder instead of coming into the side later and trying to be a top order player?

Personally reckon his whole career would have been a lot better, and he wouldn't ever have been so muddled at what his role should have been.
 

Burgey

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To be fair, SA was, for all intents and purposes already excluded prior to the agreement.

SA had not played any international cricket since 1970 and the Gleneagles Agreement was in 1977.

A more interesting question is what would have happened if South Africa had been allowed to play until 1977?

People like Clive Rice would have played Tests and Eddie Barlow would have captained South Africa in Tests.

We would probably have seen widespread anti-apartheid protests in Australia, England, and especially New Zealand, if SA had still toured. And how would they have fared if they had been invited to the 1975 World Cup?
Saw a pretty interesting video on YouTube about the rebel WI touring side. It deals in part with the walk off and the pressure which was placed on the players at the time.

Well worth a watch if you have time. The personal toll on the players who toured in that WI team was immense, and continues for a lot of them to this day.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xj5JjHeLd9o
 

RossTaylorsBox

International Coach
What if Misbah doesn't get caught in the T20 final in 2007. Would the IPL be as big as it is now?

What if Chris Martin learned how to drive? Would he have scored a Test 50?
 

Shady Slim

Cricketer Of The Year
here's some from the recent Adelaide test:

Vijay's LBW
murali vijay was plumb LBW off Lyon when he was on 99 and that was the trigger for the great Indian collapse. what if:
-erasmus, who was an absolute frick with LBWs that day, didn't give him out?
OR
-vijay blocks
OR
-vijay hits it out of the park and brings up his hundred with a six?

Kohli's Catch
the match was still in the balance until kohli got out. marsh took a terribly awkward catch. he took it as if he was taking a skier, but took it after bending low and practically collapsing on himself. considering it was a regulation catch he made look difficult, what if by trying to take it this awful way he dropped it and gave kohli a chance to shepherd their terribad tail to a possible win?

TPC's Emergence
smith took that test, and series, right by its horns and rightly got MOTS. if he had not had a breakout series then, if he was batting terribly, does he get considered for future captaincy? does he get dropped for poor form for marsh? does watson at three stay for the ashes?

Phil Hughes
here is a marginally more, eh, macabre one. theoretically if that one bouncer hadn't struck hughes and he did not sadly pass, went on to get his hundred and got picked for the adelaide test, consider these:
-the australians, not just for this test but for the summer, wouldn't have that whole playing for their mate thing going - less motivation
-marsh wouldn't have played that test and hughes would have - and who would have done better?
-that test would not even get played at adelaide
-sean abbott would also be different from the experience, and what he does in the big bash and especially that sheffield shield match against Queensland in which he did really well would all play differently to what history says
 

OverratedSanity

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Still maintain we'd have won that if Rahane hadn't been sawn off. Not saying we were robbed or anything,mind, since we got plenty of decisions in our favour.
 

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