First Test 1975/76

West Indies v Australia

Jarrett Park, Montego Bay: 7th – 9th May 1976

It was at Jarrett Park in Montego Bay for the first Test where Windies captain Louise Browne won the toss and elected to bat. Anne Gordon‘s Australians soon discovered a wicket that was not going to assist fast bowlers with big reputations and were soon chasing leather, with neither Sharon Tredrea nor Raelee Thompson making any early inroads.

When I went out to toss on the first morning I was horrified at the cracks in the wicket and did not expect it to last for 3 days.  Most wickets in Jamaica are clay based and the outfield was rough.  This meant that the fast bowlers would only have a limited time for the shine to remain on the ball and it would be the job of the medium pacers and slow bowlers to take on the bulk of the bowling…” – Anne Gordon

It was the off break bowler from Wellington in NSW, Marie Lutschini, who took the first wicket, Jasmine Sammy stumped by Marg Jennings for 41 when the score was 84. Next to follow was Gloria Gill, for 5, stumped by Jennings, bowled Lutschini. Third to go was Browne, for 67, stumped by Jennings, bowled Lutschini. The first three batters were stumped Jennings, bowled Lutschini.

Marie Lutschini made an impressive debut with the ball and finished up with 4/48 in her first Test match, she threw the ball up in the air, mixed up her deliveries very well and performed like a true professional.   Her temperament was also very good when the hard hitting batswomen thought they would hit her out of the ground, and she kept her cool and the results came her way and she and Margaret Jennings combined very well.”

In the West Indies total of 282, Lutschini took four wickets, Wendy Blunsden and Thompson two each and one to Anne Gordon. The last batter, Sheryl Bayley, was out stumped Jennings bowled Blunsden. The Victorian wicket keeper was on fire.

Margaret Jennings read her bowling so well… I had not expected to see this so quickly and it was credit to Margaret’s ability to read each ball bowled by Marie.”

Likewise for the West Indies, their fast bowlers found the going tough and the Aussies through Lorraine Hill (73) and contributions right down the order were 8/268 when stumps were drawn on day three. It had been slow and unimaginative cricket on a wicket that wasn’t going to produce a result even if the match spread to five days.

West Indies 282 (Browne 67, Sammy 41, Lutschini 4-48) drew with Australia 8/268 (Hill 73, Latty-Scott 5-48)