Dawood offered cars to Indian players: Vengsarkar; Kapil denies claim

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Updated: Monday, October 28, 2013, 17:29 [IST]
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'Dawood offered cars to Indian players'

New Delhi, Oct 28: In a sensational revelation, former India captain Dilip Vengsarkar has claimed that underworld don Dawood Ibrahim had offered the players cars if they beat Pakistan and won the tournament in Sharjah in 1987.

According to media reports, Vengsarkar had claimed that Dawood had walked into the Indian team's dressing room in Sharjah before a match in 1987 and promised each and every player a Toyota car if they defeated Pakistan and won the championship.

"Dawood had said: 'If you guys win the tournament, I will give all of you a Toyota car each. The offer was rejected by the team," Vengsarkar was quoted as saying at a function in Jalgaon.

In 1987, India, Pakistan, Australia and England were involved in a four-nation tournament. However, Indian team finished second, losing to Australia on run rate.

Reacting to this news, former India captain Kapil Dev said he was not aware of the car offer but confirmed Dawood Ibrahim was in the dressing room but he had ordered him to walk out.

"Yes, I remember a gentleman walking into our dressing room in a game in Sharjah and wanting to talk to the players," Kapil Dev told indiatoday.in on Monday.

"But I asked him to leave the dressing room immediately as outsiders were not allowed. He listened to me and then walked out of the dressing room without saying anything. Later, someone told me he was a smuggler from Bombay and his name was Dawood Ibrahim. Beyond that nothing happened," he added.

On the car offer, he said: "No such offer came to my knowledge then. If Dilip is saying it now, he would know more than me."

The same report goes on to quote the Late Jayawant Lele, who had written about the car offer. Lele was the manager of the team during that series.

"If the Indian team becomes champion here, I shall present a Toyota car to each team member, including officials, at their doorsteps in India," Lele, who was BCCI's secretary, had written in his book "'I was There - Memoirs of a Cricket Administrator".

"As bad luck would have it, India lost the tournament. Australia were declared champions on the basis of a higher run rate, as Australia, England and India earned equal points! After the results were declared most team members were not in tears, but that man was!" Lele added.

"After a long gap, we came to know that the man who met us in Sharjah in 1987 was Dawood Ibrahim, the alleged mastermind of the dastardly Mumbai blasts in 1993," Lele mentioned in the book.


Story first published:  Monday, October 28, 2013, 16:53 [IST]
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