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Sunil Gavaskar was the first to get 10,000 Test runs and 30 centuries.
11. Turning Point
Joining the St. Xaviers high School proved the turning point of Gavaskars carrier as the school boasted of many recognized players, including Ashok Mankad. Playing for Bombay, Sunny scored 246 in the Cooch Behar Trophy in 1965 66. Sunils prolific run getting saw him get selected for the All India schools team against the touring London Schoolboys. Young Gavaskar was awarded with the J.C.Mukherjee Trophy for the Best Schoolboy Cricketer of the year in 1965 66.. Subsequently, he was selected for the Bombay University and the Bombay Ranji Trophy team.
12. Ups And downs
His perfect technique and temperament made him one of the greatest batsmen of all times but Sunil Gavaskar could not adjust to the demands of the one day cricket. He was a technician and he wasnt comfortable in playing strokes, which did not form part of the coaching manuals. Just imagine, he could score only 36 not out in a match of 60 overs against England. His only century in the ODIs came against the New Zealand in the Reliance World cup, 1987. Though he was a great batsman but as a captain he did not live up to expectations as India won just 10 Tests under his captaincy.
13. Important Statistics
Test Debut India v West Indies at Port of Spain, 2nd Test, 1970 71.
Last Test India v Pakistan at Bangalore, 5th Test, 1986 87.
ODI Debut India v England at Leeds, Prudential Trophy, 1974.
Last ODI India v England at Bombay, World Cup, 1987 88.
First Class Debut Vazir Sultan Colts XI v Dungarpur XI at Hyderabad, 1966 67.
Last First Class Match Rest of the World v M.C.C. at Lords, 1987.
Wisden Cricketer of the Year 1980.
Sunil Manohar Gavaskar is probably the only technically correct cricketer in the world.
Many players have big records but nobody ever played cricket straighter than Sunny Gavaskar.He is a textbook of cricket technique. His records suggest he was a great cricketer,ofcourse,but how many of you have seen a batsman play a bowlers backdrive such that it travelled just about four inches past the stumps on the opposite end to reach the boundary even before the bowler stopped in his follow through? And do this consistently atleast once in every innings!
How many batsmen have you seen bending their knees and delicately late cutting a spinners delivery almost out of the wicket keepers gloves.The Latecut seems to have retired from Indian Test Cricket along with Sunil Gavaskar.
How many 54 batsmen have you seen play a highspeed short ball, aimed at his forehead, in such a way that it dropped near his feet and stayed there till a close in fielder picked it up?All this without even a helmet to wear!.
How many cricket commentators have you seen recognise Saqlain Mustaqs Straight delivery just by looking at the Seam and Shine position of the ball at the time of delivery?Even Sachin Tendulkar has got out to this delivery three consequetive times!.
Im not Dom Moraes but this is an effort to pay tribute to the worlds greatest cricketer.Im sure all those who have seen him play will agree with me As for those who have not seen Sunny play and still love the game you might as well compensate a little by watching the likes of Sachin Tendulkar,Mark Waugh and Brian Lara.
Guess you were just born Unlucky.
15. ICC Match Referee Records
Test Debut West Indies v England at Kingston, 1st Test, 1993 94
Test Appearances 1
ODI Debut West Indies v England at Bridgetown, 1st ODI, 1993 94
Latest ODI West Indies v England at Port of Spain, 5th ODI, 1993 94
ODI Appearances 5
16. Overtook Bradmans test record
The Pakistans test series was followed by a six Test series against the touring West Indies at the height of their powers. The First Test was held in Kanpur and India were crushed by an innings. Gavaskar had his bat knocked out of his hand by a hostile delivery from Malcolm Marshall before being dismissed. In the Second Test in Delhi, Gavaskar delivered his riposte to Marshall, hooking him for a consecutive four and six to start his innings. Gavaskar, unwilling to be dictated to by the Caribbean pacemen, hooked the short pitched barrage relentlessly, reaching his half century in 37 balls. He then went on to score 121, his 29th Test century in 94 balls in his 95th test match, equalling Don Bradmans world record. He also passed 8000 Test runs in the innings, and was personally honoured by Indira Gandhi, the Prime Minister of India at the ground. The match was drawn. Gavaskars 90 in the Third Test at Ahmedabad saw him pass Geoff Boycotts Test world record of 8114 career runs, but was insufficient to prevent another defeat. During the Fifth Test in the series, India were defeated by an innings at Calcutta to concede a 3 0 series lead. India had won only one of their 32 most recent Tests and none of their last 28. The Bengali crowd singled out the Marathi Gavaskar, who had made a golden duck and 20. Angry spectators pelted objects onto the playing arena and clashed with police, before stoning the team bus. In the Sixth Test in Madras, he compiled his 30th Test century in his 99th test match, with an unbeaten 236 which was the highest Test score by an Indian. It was his 13th Test century and third double century against the West Indies,propelling him to overtake Donald Bradmans 29 test centuries record. He had aggregated 505 at 50.50 for the series.
With India having failed to win for 29 successive Tests, Kapil was sacked as captain and Gavaskar resumed leadership at the start of the 1984 85 season. The two Test tour of Pakistan resulted in two further draws, with Gavaskar compiling 120 runs at 40. The First Test against England saw India break through for its first Test victory in 32 matches. It proved to be a false dawn, with England squaring the series 1 1 in Delhi before another controversial Third Test at Eden Gardens in Calcutta. The hostile crowd watched as India batted for over two days to reach 7 437 after 203 overs. Angry with the slow pace of Indias innings, the crowd chanted Gavaskar down! Gavaskar out! blaming him for India performance. The local police chief reportedly asked Gavaskar to declare to placate the angry crowd. When Gavaskar led his team onto the field, he was pelted with fruit. Gavaskar vowed never to play at Eden Gardens again, and duly withdrew from the team for Indias next fixture at the Bengali capital two years later, ending his record of 106 consecutive Tests. The match was drawn, but India conceded the series after losing the Fourth. The series ended 1 2, and with a poor display of 140 runs at 17.5, Gavaskar resigned, although he had already announced his intention to relinquish the leadership before the series. The change of captain improved the form of neither Gavaskar nor India as they toured Sri Lanka for a three Test series. India were embarrassed 1 0 by the Test minnows, with Gavaskar managing only 186 runs at 37.2.
17. International farewell
In 1985 86, India toured Australia, playing against a team in a poor form slump. India were unable to capitalise as all three Tests were drawn, but Gavaskar did. He scored an unbeaten 166 in the First Test in Adelaide and 172 in the Third Test in Sydney, ending the series with 352 runs at 117.33. A three Test tour of England saw him score only 185 runs at 30.83, which India won 2 0 despite his unproductivity. In 1986 87, Gavaskars final season in Test cricket, India faced a long season of eleven home Tests. Against a team regarded as the worst to leave Australian shores, Gavaskar made 90 in the second innings of the First Test in Madras, giving India a chance to reach the target of 348, which ended in a tie. He scored 103 in the Third Test to end the series with 205 runs at 51.66. The First Test against Sri Lanka in Kanpur saw Gavaskars 34th and final Test century of 176. He scored 74 and 5 in the next two Tests as India won the three match series 2 0. The five Test series against arch enemies Pakistan was to be his last. Gavaskar scored 91 in the drawn First Test in Madras before withdrawing from the Second Test in Calcutta as he had promised. In the Fourth Test in Ahmedabad, Gavaskars 63 made him the first batsman to pass 10,000 runs. With the teams locked 0 0 leading into the final Test in Bangalore, there was to be no fairytale. Gavaskar was dismissed for 96 in the second innings as India were bowled out to give Pakistan a 1 0 series win.
Gavaskar was also a fine slip fielder and his safe catching in the slips helped him become the first Indian (excluding wicket keepers) to take over a hundred catches in Test matches. In one ODI against Pakistan in Sharjah in 1985, he took four catches and helped India defend a small total of 125. Early in his Test career, when India rarely used pace bowlers, Gavaskar also opened the bowling for a short spell on occasions if only one pace bowler was playing, before a three pronged spin attack took over. The only wicket claimed by him is that of Pakistani Zaheer Abbas in 1978 79.
While Gavaskar could not be described as an attacking batsman, he had the ability of keeping the scoreboard ticking with unique shots such as the late flick . His focus of technical correctness over flair meant that his style of play was usually less suited to the shorter form of the game, at which he had less success. His infamous 36 not out in the 1975 World Cup, carrying his bat through the full 60 overs against England, led Indian supporters to storm the field and confront him for scoring so slowly when India needed nearly a run a ball to win; at the end of the game India had lost only three wickets but scored 200 runs less than England. Gavaskar almost went through his career without scoring a one day century. He managed his first (and only ODI century) in the 1987 World Cup, when he hit 103 not out against New Zealand in his penultimate ODI innings at Vidarbha Cricket Association Ground, Nagpur.
19. Outside cricket
Gavaskar has also been awarded the Padma Bhushan. In December 1994 he was appointed the Sheriff of Mumbai, an honorary post, for a year. After retirement, he has been a popular, if sometimes controversial commentator, both on TV and in print. He has written four books on cricket Sunny Days (autobiography), Idols, Runs n Ruins and One Day Wonders. He also served as an advisor to the India national cricket team during the home series against Australia in 2004. He was the Chairman of the ICC cricket committee until the time he was forced to choose between commenting and being on the committee. He left the committee to continue his career as a broadcaster.
The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) named Sunil Gavaskar as the recipient of the Col CK Nayudu Lifetime Achievement Award for Cricket in India in 2012. Gavaskar will receive the trophy, a citation and a cheque for Rs 2.5 million at the BCCI awards function.The inaugural Mansur Ali Khan Pataudi Memorial Lecture was given by Gavaskar on 20 February 2013 at Taj Coromandel, Chennai.The Border Gavaskar Trophy has been instituted in his (co )honour.Gavaskar also tried his hand at acting on the silver screen. He played the lead role in the Marathi movie Savli Premachi . The movie did not receive much appreciation though. After many years he appeared in a guest role in a Hindi movie Maalamal .He has sung a Marathi song Ya Duniyemadhye Thambayaala Vel Konala which was written by noted Marathi lyricist Shantaram Nandgaonkar. The song depicted the similarities between a cricket match and real life. It had become popular.
In a notorious ODI performance in 1975, he opened the batting and managed just 36 (not out) off 174 balls (scoring just one four). Replying to Englands 334 from 60 overs, India managed only 132 for 3 from the 60 overs. It was alleged that Gavaskar deliberately performed poorly in that match, due to his annoyance with the promotion of Srinivas Venkataraghavan to the captaincy. He later claimed that he simply could not adjust to the pace of the game.Recently, he has been involved in a string of controversies as an ICC official. He has been criticised for supporting changes in cricket rules that tend to favour batsmen. In addition, his role as the chief selector for ICC World XI also came under criticism due to some controversial selections, which resulted in one sided matches against the ICC World Champion, Australia.
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