Wednesday, 20 April 2011



Since the 1983 when India got First World up under the Captaincy of Kapil Dev Indians have been aspiring to repeat the history. Finally, India Crickets team became a World Champion 2011 defeating Sri Lanka by 6 Wickets. After hiatus of 28 yrs, India team captured cricket World Cup, with home court victory over Sri Lanka and Pakistan earlier.

The partnership between Dhoni and Gautam Gambhir led the comeback, as both came just shy of 188 runs between them. MS Dhoni crushed a six on the final ball to complete the chase for the Indians, who overcame a 274-run inning by their opponent, despite losing their first two batsmen (including "the master" Sachin Tendulkar) in the opening overs. It appeared like a bloodless Gladiator, in which Dhoni emerged victorious.  Indian team unanimous in dedicated Trophy to Sachin whom they carried around the field on their shoulders.  When reporter asked Yuvraj, why you guys were carrying Sachin on your shoulders, his telling reply was, "Sachin carried aspiration of Indian people on his shoulders for 21 years, so he deserves to be on our shoulders".   

This started spontaneous celebration all over the world.  In fact, thousands of Indians including Indian Consulate Generals of India, news media, community leaders and jubilant vibrant general audience got together for grand celebration in Chicago, New York, London to all parts of India.  Some events were supported by several Indian-American businesses. Many speakers talked of how the victory signified not only a triumph in the sport world but also India’s rise as a rising global power.  It appeared that the Capital of World Cricket has moved from the Great Britain, one time colonial power, to India.  

However we should not forget contribution of Sachin who scored about 500 runs in the tournament, Virat Kohli and Gautam Gambhir who set the pace on scoreboard and Zaheer Khan taking 21 wickets, highest number matching Pakistan captain, Mohammad Afride.

While eulogiging Dhoni one should not forget the past what India was going through after 1983 victory. As the old guards retired from the Indian Cricket, although a number of new faces emerged they failed one after the other. Some failed for lack of interest in a stressful job and others for being caught in scandals. Finally, Sourv Ganguly ("Dada") was picked up for the Captain's job who not only provided a dynamic leadership over 15 years but also gave self esteem and confidence to young colleagues by refusing to put up with well known tactics of sleazing and racism due to the Australians and English dominance in World cricket. In fact, Dada's record of success overseas has been very impressive including taking India to World Cup 2003 final. Sachin Tendulker played a vital role and was chosen man of the tournament with highest individual score. Since then he has either broken or set many new World records in cricket history and now has 99 centuries to his credit in Test and ODI cricket. Dada also has to his credit ove 20,000 runs and glorious victory against Australia in 1999 when they were steamrolling every team in the World. VVS Lakhman and Harbhajan Singh emerged as heroes with 281 run and a Hat Trick respectively putting India once again in lime light on global map.  Let us not forget Rahul Dravid who also has over 20,000 runs to his cerdit and has always stood like a solid rock when everyone failed and Anil Kumbale who set handsome record in wicket taking and smashing many great batsmen. Last but not the least let us not forget  reckless batting of Sehwag and Yuvraj.  Although Dhoni may well be one of the best Captains we have yet to see one of the most daring and reckless Captain like Dad (better known as Prince of Calcutta) India ever produced.  After all, the most of the key players including Dhoni are outcomes of Dad's mind set.   

In 2003 under Dada's Captaincy there were a huge amount of bright sides in that tournament for India. Firstly, Man of the Tournament Sachin Tendulkar had outperformed every other cricketer in the world cup and had reclaimed his status as one of the best batsmen in the history of world cricket. Tendulkar was leading run scorer with 673 runs, followed by fellow Indian Sourav Ganguly who was 208 runs (111 from 114 balls, 5 fours, 5 sixes) for behind in second. Tendulkar's 152 against Namibia was the second highest score of the tournament and he achieved an average of 61.18. There were upsides in the bowling department as well with Zaheer Khan 4th on the wicket takers list. Finally, India as a team had achieved a streak beaten only by Australia; they lost only two matches in the entire World Cup, both of those being by large margins to champions Australia. The Indian Squad that were the Runners-up of the 2003 World Cup comprised.

Since 2003 Indian team has under gone trials and tribulations and plunge into swamp when it suffered serious disaster by humiliating defeat with Bangladesh and knockout from the World Cup 2007. Despite bad experience of Australians some say BCCI consciously appointed Greg Chapel as a Coach for Indian Team to settle score with Dad. It didn't take much time to become obvious that Mr. Chapel had an agenda to harm rather than help the Indian team. Politicking and divisiveness became the culture of Indian cricket with one goal in mind how to get rid of Dada. This created an unprecedented controversial debate and protest all over India which prompted Lok Sabha Speaker, Somnath Chatterji to make a statement in Parliament in response to call attention motions. Mr Sarad Pawar, a politician (but an unassuming man) had successfully organised a coup against Mr Dalmia, former Chairman of ICC and BCCI. Ultimately, the Captaincy of Indian team was passed on to Mahendra Singh Dhoni.  Despite all the controversies surrounding Dada, no one could say that he ever promoted regionalism in the Cricket.  In fact, his team was quite diversified and balanced.

In conclusion, in spite of all the adverse publicity about Dhooi's performance and not listening to sympathetic ears he along with   South African Coach, Gerry Kirsten emerged as an Avante Garde performer for the day with 91. He has not only shown his skills and power with his bat but he has also shown a great deal of  organisational skills which gave India win after win including T20 and Australian series. Dhooni became a proverbial saying, "Everything that Dhoni touches becomes Gold". So beware of Dhoni as he would have last word.