07. Winston Davis – $8.4 Million
Winston Walter Davis (born 18 September 1958) is a West Indian former cricketer. Davis played his first representative match for West Indies Young Cricketers against their English counterparts at Port-of-Spain in August 1976, making an immediate impact by taking 4-35 in his first innings, including the wickets of future Test cricketers David Gower, Mike Gatting and Paul Downton. In 1978 he went to England for the return matches, but it was not until 1979/80 that he made his first-class debut, for Windward Islands against Leeward Islands at St John’s.
In the meantime in 1982, he had made his Test and One Day International debuts for in the 1982/83 series against India, his first wicket in Test cricket being that of Mohinder Amarnath.
In 1983 Davis was selected for West Indies’ World Cup squad, and when brought into the side for the second group match against Australia at Headingley, immediately hit the headlines by taking 7-51, at the time a world record return in ODIs. He was retained for the other four group matches, but took only one more wicket in total and was not selected for the semi-final or final – perhaps unsurprising when one considers that players of the calibre of Marshall, Garner, Holding and Roberts were all in West Indies’ squad for the tournament.
He played in all six Tests in India that winter, taking 14 wickets, but when Australia visited the West Indies in the spring of 1984, Davis was selected for only one Test and one ODI, and despite his experience of English conditions he was at first left out of the party to play England that summer, although when Milton Small was ruled out by a knee injury part-way through the series Davis was drafted into the squad. He played in the fourth Test at Old Trafford, and though he was not particularly effectual with the ball beyond managing to fracture Paul Terry’s ulna he did score 77, his highest first-class innings, coming in as nightwatchman on the first day.
In 1984/85 Davis performed well on home soil after being selected for the last two Tests of the four-game series against New Zealand, taking 10 wickets at 18.80 including a career-best 4-19 at Kingston, and took part in no less than 15 ODIs in Australia.