🏏 The man who changed Indian cricket forever - Kapil Dev


#1

:cricket_bat_and_ball: Kapil Dev Ram Lal Nikhanj (born 6 January 1959) is a former Indian cricketer who led India to their maiden World Cup victory in 1983. He is considered to be one of the greatest cricketing all-rounders of all time and the greatest fast-bowling all-rounder India has ever produced.

:boom: Nicknamed ‘Haryana Hurricane’ as he used to bamboozle batsmen with his prodigious swing and was the Indian team’s main strike bowler for the major part of his career.

:100: :star2: He is the first player to take 200 ODI wickets. He is the only player in the history of cricket to have taken more than 400 wickets (434 wickets) and scored more than 5000 runs in Tests.

  • In 1978-79 season, he took his maiden 10-wicket haul in first-class cricket in a match against Services. His outstanding performance ensured that he got selected for the Irani Trophy, Duleep Trophy and Wills Trophy matches.

  • During the 1979-80 season, he scored his maiden century, when he scored 193 runs against Delhi.

  • He made his test debut against Pakistan in October 1978 though it was only after a few more matches that his impact began to be felt.

  • In 1979, playing against a visiting West Indies team, Dev made his maiden century scoring 126 runs in just 124 balls. His bowling performance was also consistent as he took 17 wickets in the series.

  • During Australian cricket team’s tour of India in 1979–80, Kapil Dev established himself as India’s premier fast bowler by taking two five-wicket hauls and a total of 28 wickets in the whole series.

  • His popularity soared when he led India to 2 victories in the 6-test home series against Pakistan.

  • He was made captain during the 1982-83 season and led his team in the :trophy: 1983 World Cup. India were underdogs in the tournament but under Kapil Dev’s charismatic leadership the team punched much above its weight and went to win the world cup by defeating the favourites West Indies in the finals.

  • He played his last World Cup in 1992 under the captaincy of Mohammad Azharuddin. As a senior bowler he mentored new talents like Javagal Srinath and Manoj Prabhakar.
    He retired in 1994 as the highest wicket taker for that time.

:billed_cap: He became the coach of the Indian team in 1999 but his stint as a coach was not successful and resigned in 2000.

:raised_hands: :medal_military: He is honored with Padma Shri, India’s fourth highest civilian award-in 1982. In 1991, he was honored with the Padma Bhushan, the third highest civilian award in India.
:sparkles: He is a recipient of several cricketing awards including the Wisden Indian Cricketer of the Century in 2002 and the ICC Cricket Hall of Fame in 2010.


#2

An interesting yet sad fact. Against Zimbabwe, India had lost their complete top order when kapil da came to bat. He scored 175 and made India won that game. However, what’s interesting about arguably the greatest batting effort in Indian cricket is that there was a BBC strike that day and hence there is no televised recording of that game.


#3

The thing is he played 86 of his 131 tests in dust bowls of Sub-continent. In the times of his debut, the role of opening bowler used to be to just take the shine of the ball for spinners. We can imagine how difficult it would have been for him. He lacked a competent partner throughout his career. He carried burden of India’s new ball bowling almost entirely on his shoulders.

But, what makes him is not all these, It was his courage and positivism that sets him apart. He changed the way Indian cricketers used to think. He made them start to believe that India can win and win anywhere!

His Strike rate was almost 100% when 250 was considered a safe score.


#4

To add to my previous post, I will recount an incident which would have been indelibly etched in to the memories of whoever witnessed it.

During the 1st Test of the 1990 India tour of England at Lord’s, India required 24 runs to save the follow-on, with 9 wickets down in the 1st innings.

At the other end was No. 11, Narendra Hirwani. So Kapil Dev decided to explode in his inimitable style by clubbing Eddie Hemmings for four consecutive sixes to avoid the follow-on and ensured that England would have to bat a second time.

It was murderous assault, calculated to perfection. A sequence of sixes, savage, soaring, spectacular and straight. Each of the four sixes were hit high and straight over the bowler’s head. Four times the bat struck the ball, the impact ringing out around the ground.

The follow-on was avoided by a single run, but it could not have been saved with more splendour. It required a Kapil Dev to do this. A man built with the all the ingredients of a legend.