C.W.J. Athey

123

vs PakistanBack to boards

Bill Athey’s only Test Match century, in his 23 outings for England, came in the second Test against Pakistan at Lord’s in 1987, a match that was drawn with only two days’ play possible.

The teams had also drawn in the opening Test of the series at Old Trafford in another match that been affected by poor weather. At Lord’s, Athey, batting at number three, came in at 29 for 1 after England had won the toss and elected to bat.

Athey’s 123 came from 202 balls, took five and a quarter hours and included fourteen fours.

He anchored the England innings, steering them to 368 all out as Chris Broad (55), Mike Gatting (43) and Bruce French (42) all made telling contributions. Athey eventually succumbed to a quick delivery from Imran Khan with the new ball.

However, rain had the final say in the match with days two, four and five completely washed out.

Pakistan won the five-match series 1-0, with four matches being drawn and it was their first win against England on their opponents’ soil.

The innings was somewhat of a pinnacle at international level for Athey, who was dropped for the final time eight matches later after failing to pass 37. He did though continue to be a prolific run scorer at county level.