Home > Features > Moments in history >

Everton Weekes and his five hundreds in successive innings

Everton Weekes and his five hundreds in successive innings

Everton Weekes was ten short of a sixth successive hundred in consecutive innings when he was declared run out © Getty Images

On this day 64 years ago, Everton Weekes created history by scoring his fifth Test century in consecutive innings. Arunabha Sengupta traces the sterling sequence of hundreds that set up a world record that still stands.

By the end of his career, he was considered by many as the most accomplished batsman amongst the hallowed group called the three Ws. Yet, his start in Test cricket was hardly auspicious.

At Bridgetown, Port-of-Spain and Georgetown, he had been moved up and down the order, sent out at the fall of the first wicket, pushed to open the innings and then dropped down to number seven. Almost all the English bowlers had troubled him, and with a highest score of 36 in five innings, he did not really seem to hold much promise.

Indeed, he was omitted from the final Test match at Kingston, and managed to play only when George Headley had to drop out at the last moment. The Jamaican crowd wanted to see local boy John Holt, and he was booed on the field throughout the English innings.

Everton Weekes came in to bat at 39 for one and was immediately dropped by Godfrey Evans off Dick Howorth. He responded with a display of majestic driving that had seldom been witnessed in the islands, but would be a recurring story during the next decade. Fifteen boundaries etched his innings as he piled up 141 runs that converted baiters into devoted fans. West Indies won the final Test by 10 wickets and took the series 2-0.

Five on the trot

Seven months down the line, in November 1949, West Indies played their next Test match in Delhi. Weekes came in at No 7 and struck the ball delightfully against a hapless Indian attack to score 128 as West Indies amassed 631.

In the second Test at the Brabourne Stadium, Bombay, Weekes was moved up to No 4. He essayed a long succession of majestic hits, including a series of delectable strokes off the back-foot to negate the guile of Vinoo Mankad. Two chances went down – the standard tale of the early Indian sides – but they hardly dimmed the brilliance of his 194.

The party moved to Calcutta for the next Test, starting on the last day of 1948. The wicket had grass. The local fast bowler, Shute Banerjee, moved the ball around, dismissing Allan Rae and Dennis Atkinson early on the first morning to reduce the visitors to 28 for two. But, Clyde Walcott stuck around for a half century and Weekes played one of the best knocks of his career. Technique flawless and the driving exquisite both off front foot and back, the Barbadian batted just over three hours to compile 162, with 24 hits to the fence.

India responded with 272, ending 94 short of the West Indian total. However, with the pitch now helpful for Ghulam Ahmed and Mankad, they were in a spot of bother when Weekes walked in again at 32 for two. By the end of the day, the innings was steady at 120 for three, Weekes unbeaten on 62.

On the next morning, January 3, 1949, West Indians lost captain John Goddard on resumption, but Walcott joined Weekes and the two young batsmen took the game beyond the Indians. With reassuring clam punctuated by crisp and classy strokes, Weekes notched up his fifth Test hundred on the trot before driving one back to Ghulam Ahmed. His 101 was a determined effort with just five boundaries, and created the world record of consecutive hundreds in Tests.

Almost one better

The match at Calcutta ended in a draw. At Madras, Allan Rae and Jeff Stollmeyer added 239 for the first wicket. Weekes walked in to bat with the score reading 319 for two.

There was a mini-wobble as a number of wickets went down and Dattu Phadkar kept pegging away from one end. But Weekes, taking his time to settle down, went about making runs with customary ease. With Gerry Gomez, he had taken the score to 472 and was 10 runs short of what would have been his sixth hundred in succession when he was run out – a murky decision by the umpire that raised quite a few eyebrows. However, the West Indies won by an innings to take the lead in the series.

The day after he was dismissed for 90, there were newspaper reports which proclaimed  Weekes ‘finally fails’.

Well, by his sublime standards Weekes failed quite miserably in the thrilling final Test at Bombay, with scores of 56 and 48. He ended the tour with 779 runs at an average of 111.29

(Arunabha Sengupta is a cricket historian and Chief Cricket Writer at CricketCountry. He writes about the history and the romance of the game, punctuated often by opinions about modern day cricket, while his post-graduate degree in statistics peeps through in occasional analytical pieces. The author of three novels, he can be followed on Twitter at http://twitter.com/senantix)

West Indies tour of India, 2014

Oct 20, 2014 (14:30 IST)   at Kolkata

Pakistan vs Australia in UAE, 2014

Oct 22, 2014 (11:30 IST)   at Dubai

West Indies tour of India, 2014

Oct 22, 2014 (19:00 IST)   at Cuttack

Zimbabwe tour of Bangladesh, 2014

Oct 25, 2014 (09:30 IST)   at Dhaka

South Africa tour of New Zealand, 2014

Oct 27, 2014 (03:00 IST)   at Hamilton

More

South Africa tour of New Zealand, 2014

Oct 24, 2014  at Mount Maunganui

South Africa won by 72 runs

South Africa tour of New Zealand, 2014

Oct 21, 2014  at Mount Maunganui

South Africa won by 6 wkts

West Indies tour of India, 2014

Oct 17, 2014  at Dharamsala

India won by 59 runs

West Indies tour of India, 2014

Oct 14, 2014  at Visakhapatnam

Match cancelled

Pakistan vs Australia in UAE, 2014

Oct 12, 2014  at Abu Dhabi

Australia won by 1 run

Photos

Pakistan vs Australia, 1st Test at Dubai

Videos

AB de Villiers praises team after win in 1st ODI

Viv Richards’ 6/41 bowls West Indies to a thrilling victory over India

Asad Shafiq emerges as dependable No 6 for Pakistan

Pakistan vs Australia 2014: Mitchell Johnson shows signs of effectiveness on unhelpful surfaces

South Africa vs New Zealand 2014: Vital for Brendon McCullum to find form quickly

Australia Australia tour of UAE 2014 Australia vs Pakistan Australia vs Pakistan 2014 India New Zealand New Zealand vs South Africa New Zealand vs South Africa 2014 Pakistan Pakistan vs Australia Pakistan vs Australia 2014 South Africa South Africa tour of New Zealand 2014 South Africa vs New Zealand South Africa vs New Zealand 2014

MS Dhoni has done a commendable job as India captain, says Yuvraj Singh

Michael Holding insists that MS Dhoni is no longer ‘innovative and proactive’

Yuvraj Singh sheds light on fight with cancer

Bangladesh vs Zimbabwe 2014: Hosts hope to return to winning ways

Kepler Wessels suprised with Jesse Ryder’s inclusion in New Zealand squad

Sarfaraz Ahmed may have trumped the Akmals as Pakistan’s wicketkeeper-batsman across formats

Don Bradman — even if every chance he ever gave in his career was accepted, he would still remain head and shoulders above the others

Len Hutton’s hundred gets reported as illness

Viv Richards’ 6/41 bowls West Indies to a thrilling victory over India

Asad Shafiq emerges as dependable No 6 for Pakistan

Fan of the Day

Suraj Gowda

Suraj Gowda

642 Posts | 9 Fans

Virat Kohli's Family Meets Anushka Sharma

Top Sex Positions: Frog Princess

Happy New Year box office: Shah Rukh Khan and Deepika Padukone’s film off to a flying start!

Nokia turnaround since handset unit sale continues, reports $950 million Q3 net profit

‘Kaththi’ mints Rs.15.4 crore on release day

Google partners Oxford University to teach machines to think

Rashami Desai, Ravi Dubey, Tina Dutta wish to have a pet friendly Diwali!

How to make tamarind or imli packs for hair and skin

Happy New Year movie review: Crafted to please Shah Rukh Khan fans

Also on cricketcountry.com

Play Fantasy Cricket & Win

Cash Daily! Click here