Dom Sibley's family wins INR 20 Lakh after late grandfather's bet pays off

Dom Sibley’s family wins INR 20 Lakh after late grandfather’s bet pays off

Sibley made his debut against New Zealand on England's previous tour.

Dominic Sibley
Dominic Sibley. (Photo Source: Getty Images)

England’s opening batsman Dom Sibley had a memorable day in his Test career on Tuesday when he slammed his maiden international hundred in the absorbing second match in South Africa in Cape Town. The 24-year-old, who is playing just his third Test match after making a debut in New Zealand last November, remained not out on 133 in the second innings as the visitors piled on the runs.

Sibley debut also proved to be unique as his family collected £21,000 (almost Rs 20 lakh) in winnings a bet by his late maternal grandfather eight years ago came to fruition. Kenneth Mackenzie, cricketer’s grandfather, had placed two punts — at 150-6 and 66-1 on Sibley playing for England when he was a teen.

Mackenzie passed away in 2011 but Dom Sibley’s mother Christine made the claim on his behalf after he made his international debut in Mount Maunganui last year. “He’d have been so proud of Dom’s achievement, so watching him was tinged with sadness, but he’d also have been delighted at pulling off the bet at massive odds,” Christine was quoted as saying by The Times.

‘Grandfather said Dom could play for England when he was five’

“Dom (Sibley) was five when he originally said he could play for England — by the time he was seven or eight he was playing for the under nines and that was when the inquiries were made at William Hill about the odds. He went back a few years later and told them he thought the odds were a bit skinny, but they honoured the bet,” she added.

Bookmakers William Hill in Leatherhead paid it out. “This is a record-breaking payout for any such bet involving a cricket protégé. Dom clearly made a massive impression on his adoring grandfather and it is a great shame he never lived to collect his winnings,” the company spokesman said.

Dom Sibley’s unbeaten knock in the second innings helped England put pressure on South Africa. Chasing the improbable target of 438 runs, the hosts put up an admirable fight in an attempt to draw the game. But England’s bowlers were too good as they sealed the second Test match in the closing stages of Day 5 to level the series.

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