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Last Updated:  Tuesday, 21 January, 2003, 10:53 GMT

Dean Jones - 1987
Dean Jones and Allan Border
Jones and Border show their elation after a job well done
Australia tasted World Cup success for the first time with a narrow victory over England in the final at Calcutta.

Batsman Dean Jones says the Aussies were the fittest team in the tournament and deserved their win - but got little recognition from the Australian Cricket Board.

Australia's first game resulted in a one-run win over India. How important was that victory?

For some players it's very important to get an early win as that seems to set them on their way.

I vividly remember hitting Maninder Singh for what I thought was a six but Dickie Bird wasn't sure if it had cleared the rope.

He asked Ravi Shastri who was fielding on the boundary and he said it was a four. Dickie took his word.

We complained about it after the innings after seeing it on television and Dickie asked Ravi again. He said it might have cleared the rope and our score was adjusted from 269 to 271.

In the end it turned out to be vital and set us on our way.

Opening batsmen Geoff Marsh and David Boon had an excellent tournament. How crucial was it for Australia to get off to good starts in their innings?

We were rated the worst team in the tournament at the start but we proved a lot of people wrong through our fitness and the performances of the two openers.

It's a lot easier to be going in at 70-1 than at 20-1 and Boony ensured we would not have to nurdle it around in the middle order. The opening partnership was a huge factor behind us winning the World Cup.

How important were the services of Steve Waugh as a genuine all-rounder?

He bowled at the death and his performances were awesome throughout the tournament.

Steve was still struggling as a Test player at that time but the World Cup was like climbing Everest for him.

After the World Cup he realised he could compete at the top level and it was the turning point in his career.

His 22 off the last over in the semi-final was one of the best performances of the competition.

Fast bowler Craig McDermott batted as high as number four with some success. Was it a plan to catch the opposition unawares?

Absolutely. Pinch hitters were just coming into the game at that stage and sending Craig in early scared the hell out of teams.

They knew he could launch it and if he could hang around then he had the potential to be devastating.

How did you see your own performances in the tournament?

Dean Jones
Jones was a vital cog batting at number three

Not too bad. I didn't get a big score but I rarely failed.

I made a few fifties and felt like I contributed. We won the tournament though because of our fielding and fitness. We were the fittest Australian side ever to leave Australia.

After we beat New Zealand, Bob Simpson made us get up at 6am to train on the front lawn of the hotel so the New Zealanders would see us as they boarded the coach to the airport.

They sent word around that we meant business and that bit of psychology from Simmo was vital.

Australia do not traditionally have a good record in India. Was that an easy hurdle to overcome?

We toured India the previous year and had the tied Test in Madras.

I loved going there and that tour gave us the chance to get our plans right and acclimatise.

A few of the guys had some personal success on the tour so we had plenty of confidence when we went back.

How important was Mike Gatting's dismissal in the final? Was it the turning point in the game?

Crucial. He knows now he shouldn't have played that reverse sweep but if he had hit it for four then it wouldn't be remembered now.

Another crucial dismissal for us was Phil DeFreitas at the end. He was smacking sixes all over the place and getting England close.

Bruce Reid took a brilliant catch on the boundary to dismiss Daffy and we knew then we had won.

It was Australia's first World Cup victory. How were you received when you arrived home?

It was all a bit of an anti-climax really.

At the end of the game we did a lap of honour and I'll never forget that.

Fireworks were going off in the stands and it was like a scene out of a movie. But we were so exhausted that Boony and I were in bed by 8pm.

We didn't get a thing from the ACB. No bonus, dinner or medal. Now the players get World Cup rings but we didn't get a thing.

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