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Kapil~~s Devils made cricket... Part-2

Published: Monday, June 23, 2008, 3:35 [IST]
 
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Ecstatic India skipper Kapil and his deputy Amarnath with '83 gloryIndia defending a paltry 183 in the final were in a spot of bother when Viv Richards started doing what he does best - hitting the Indian bowlers all round the park - before the Messiah Kapil pulled off a stunner of a catch in deep, which he took running backwards for about 20 yards, to dismiss Viv. The humble lad from Haryana marshalled his resources in a measured way. He used the part-time bowlers like Amarnath (who rarely bowled for Delhi in domestic events) exceptionally well. The Haryana Hurricane amassed 280 runs and plucked nine wickets in the event.

Mohinder Amarnath: A stubborn and gritty cricketer who had the uncanny knack of scoring the runs with ease on hostile wickets. A batting all-rounder from Delhi was a kingpin in India's scheme of things in the event. His match winning all-round effort in the semis and final earned him the man-of-the-match awards and India the coveted Trophy. A relieble batsman up the order scored over 200 runs and plucked eight wickets including 3/12 in finals with his probing military medium pace deliveries.

Roger Binny: Right-arm medium pacer taylor-made for seaming English wickets emerged as the leading wicket-taker in the competition with a record 18 wickets in eight games. He also made some useful contributions with the willow down the order.

Madan Lal: A bowling all-rounder was one of the key figures of India's successfull Cup. This gritty character from Punjab (but played for Delhi in Ranji) took some thrashing from that carefree Richards and convinced the unwilling Kapil to have one more over. He induced Viv to top edge a pull that flew to deep mid-wicket and Kapil at mid-wicket ran backwards for over 20 yards before clinging onto it. Madan bagged as many as 17 wickets including 4/12 in the last group tie against Aussies and scored some useful runs batting at No 9/10.

Yashpal: This right-hand batsman along with Sandeep and Amarnath added solidaty to Indian middle-order. Ludhiana-born Haryana Ranji star Yashpal set the tone for India in the event with a match-winning 89 against Windies in the first group tie. His caution-mixed-aggressive 61 (studded with a massive six over long-leg off Willies) set up India's emphatic win against the hosts England. Yashpal's consistant show with the bat relegated the classy Vengsarkar to the benches.

'83 WC final: Scorecard

Sandeep: The swashbuckler from Mumbai very often chipped in with quick 20s and 30s to help India post a fighting total. If Yashpal and Jimmy (Mohinder) revived the Indian innings after a rather consistant poor start (with Sunny going thro lean patch) it was the young attacking batsmen Sandeep and skipper Kapil stretched their side's total with rapidfire knocks. Sandeep took pacer Bob Willies to the cleaner smashing the English skipper for five boundaries in an over in his breezy 32-ball 51(8 boundaries) in the semis at Old Trafford.

Srikkanth: The dasher from Madras kept his best for finals where he scored a strokeful 38 (highest in the match). He showed no respect to the bowlers of the likes of Roberts and ilk. The nose twirling, restless and carefree batter pulled, drove, cut and lofted the fearsome foursome - Garner, Holding, Roberts and Marshall - with ease. Srikkanth was an asset to the team in more than one way. Besides the pyrotechniques his antics and pranks lightened up the dressing room that certainly helped Indians play without undue pressure on big stage.

Gavaskar: Batting ace had an unusually quiet tournament and critics credit it to ill feeling between Sunny and Kapil over captaincy. Actually going by Kapil's words: Sunny was a great help to team. The seasoned cricketer from Mumbai school helped his skipper with his inputs on on strength and weakness of opponants, in deciding batting line-up, bowling changes, field placements et al. He held onto some stiff offerings at the slip cordon.

Sandhu: Who will forget his magical inswinger which left Greenidge sheepish. How on earth did he managed to swing a short of length ball well outside the off-stump line by almost 90 degree that rearrenged Greenidge's timberwork. It spurred the Indians despite defending a paltry total and that too against Windies studded with Viv Richards, Lloyd, Gomes, Kalicharan, Haynes, Croft et al. Sandhu, who shared new ball with Kapil, bowled economic spells throughout the event.

The Colonel Vengsarkar and Ravi Shastri too played their part in Indian success. And left-arm seamer Sunil Valson, who was in 1983 squad but never played in the said event nor for India in the following series, worked hard in the nets and played a key role in preparing our batsmen on the seamer-friendly English wickets.

Parting shot: The melody queen Lata Mangeshkar came to the rescue of impovireshed Indian board in 1983. The NKP Salve-led BCCI raised money thro' Mangeshkar concert and paid Rs 1 lakh each to the Kapil's Devils. The present day Indian cricketers who make a footballer's fortune owe much to the 1983 glory which changed the face of Indian cricket for once and forever...

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