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Today in Cricket History: Sunil Gavaskar, Bishan Singh Bedi star as India register their first-ever ODI win at 1975 World Cup

India entered the inaugural World Cup tournament in 1975 as an inexperienced campaigner in the ODIs. Before the tournament, India had only played two ODIs against England in 1974 and had lost them both. India, led by Srinivasaraghavan Venkataraghavan, was one of the eight teams participating in the tournament, and England was touted to be the clear favorite.

In their first match of the 1975 ODI World Cup, India suffered a heavy 202-run defeat against the Three Lions. But the side bounced back strongly in their 2nd match against East Africa. On June 11th, 1975, exactly 45 years ago, India registered their first-ever ODI victory.

At the time, the ODI used to be 60 overs-affair, with each bowler allowed to bowl a maximum of 12 overs. In the match, East Africa won the toss and elected to bat. But seamers Madan Lal and Syed Abid Ali rattled the top order, picking up 5 wickets among themselves.

Another star of the bowling attack was left-arm spinner Bishan Singh Bedi who left the opposition shackled. Bedi, in his 12 overs, had registered six runs with a wicket and bowled 8 maidens. East Africa were bundled out for 120.

For India, Sunil Gavaskar opened with Farokh Engineer. The duo went on to chase down the total in just 29.5 overs without losing a wicket. While Gavaskar remained unbeaten on 65, Engineer was unbeaten on 54 as India won the match by 10 wickets.

India lost to New Zealand by four wickets in their third game in the tournament, and could not advance further in the tournament. In the final of the tournament, West Indies defeated England by 17 runs to win the inaugural World Cup tournament.

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