Now that “The Gentlemen’s game” is back on the agenda again, and although they are not the primary feature this time, my “Calypso de Windies” was written & composed by me, many years ago, in tribute to the West Indian Cricket team, who had just beaten Australia and came over to Ceylon, to play just one exhibition game in Colombo.
I was in the Royal Ceylon Navy, at the time, stationed at H.M,Cy.S. Gemunu, our major Land-base in Colombo, and being quite keen to see the great West Indians in action, but not keen enough to stand in a queue about two miles long, in front of the Times Newspaper Office, Colombo, in Uniform, I decided to go back to Barracks and write this tribute to the team, went back to discuss it with the Manager of the Times, who presented me with a gold pass to enable me to watch the match together WITH the W.I.team, from their dressing room at the ground. These guys were all great personalities and made me feel very welcome, even though it didn’t stop them from giving the Ceylon team quite a hiding that afternoon. I was so very proud to meet them all personally and informed them about “their own Calypso” which was published in our Newspapers, that same week.
Without any further ado, here is my
Original Composition/Tribute to them.
(Especially edited for eLanka)
If ever there was a Cricket Team,
to hit top-rung in the World’s esteem,
there wouldn’t be the slightest doubt,
playing great cricket, on any wicket,
it’s the Windies, we’re talking about.
In every Test Match in Australia,
their’s was a much superior game, by far, laughing at mistakes Umpire Hoy had made, & playing bright Cricket, as it should be played.
From Captain Worrel to their last batsman, their one great moral, was to stand and slam, the Windie’s bowling, it was quite the same, with Garfield Sobers, Gibbs, and “Hall” of fame.
A man called Gerry, right behind the stumps, no ball got past him despite all the bumps, still another batsman, full of “do or die”, was known to the World as R. Kanhai.
Then Hunte & Cammie Smith were both quite fine, and so were Ramadhin and Valentine, there was Bowler Chester Watson, who tried so hard, and had the Aussie Batsmen always on their guard.
And, now a word about old Seymour Nurse, who mimics Nat King Cole and sings in verse, the Windies love to hear him sing his songs, but on the Cricket Field, he still belongs.
“Wherever they go, they will cause a stir”, says Gerry Gomez, their team Manager, and you can bet, that what he says is true, he knows his boys much more, than me or you.
Unless you want to see me behind bars
I must not forget to mention the extras,
Cos, in case the Windies needed any aid, they had, in every “extra”, men who’d made the grade.
It’s for their attitude of sheer pluck, that we, in Ceylon, wish them all the luck, and, while they travel over land or seas.
May the Lord above keep watch over the West Indies.