English crickets captain Peter May -- one of the world's most consistently brilliant batsmen - was about to fall off, quipped ex-Premier Sir John Kotelawala when the MCC team visited his home in Ceylon October 4.
English crickets captain Peter May -- one of the world's most consistently brilliant batsmen - was about to fall off, quipped ex-Premier Sir John Kotelawala when the MCC team visited his home in Ceylon October 4. But May, in fact, just missed falling off Lulu, on of Sir John's famous elephants, and so foiled the prediction. Elephant rides for the MCC came after lunching with sir John at Kandarala, Ceylon, and before two scheduled games on the island on route had arrived at Colombo by air from Bombay, where they left the liner Iberia for a three-day break.
Arriving at Ratmalana airport after a flight of nearly 1,200 miles, the British team was met by President of the Ceylon cricket board of control, Mr. R.P. Senanayake, and secretary Mr. V.J.H. Gunasekera. Young members of the large crowd pressed forward for autographs and then the team was whisked away to Kandawala with its traditional hospitality - and elephant rides.
First, wicket-keeper Godfrey Evans and vice-captain Colin Cowdray climbed aboard Lulu. Then Sir John nimbly jumped on her back and persuaded May to join him. The MCC skipper hung on grimly and only escaped a fall when Lulu lowered herself for dismounting.
The players then toured the grounds, looked at Sir John's swans and garden and ext day began their one-day match against All Ceylon XI at the Sinhalese Sports Club. It was rained off after two hours, with Ceylon standing at 47 for 6, and next day's match against the President's XI at Maitland Place was completely washed out. Previously there had been hardly a drop of rain since July - MCC were apparently taking the disastrous British summer weather with them! It was the first time that a British touring team had ever lost a whole day's play in ceylon.
The team embarked Monday night, October 6, on the Iberia, which had caught up with them from Bombay. They are due in Fremantle Australia next week.