Cerebral Shangrila

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

WC 1975 India Vs England - Thou shall not be talked about

Surprisingly , no one talked anything about it all these years. Finally on "Walk the Talk" in NDTV , Venkatraghavan ( The Captain then) talks about Sunil Gavaskar's 36 not out ( as an Opener in a 60 over one-day match) against England in the 1975 World Cup. England batted first and scored 334-4 in 60 overs . Chasing this mammoth total , India scored 132-3 in 60 overs. Gavaskar batted right through the innings to score 36 n.o. He faced 174 balls (29 overs) for his 36 runs.

There was a lot of uproar after that innings though Gavaskar emerged untarnished from it. Did Sunil play that way because he was slow to adapt to one-day cricket ( which was in its early days then) or was he according the kind of respect that one-day games deserved then ( Remember in the early 70's Test Cricket was still "true" cricket and one-day was a mere experiment in progress)? Whatever it was, there was not much public discussion then.

After 31 years, Venkat ( who is known for his candid and sometimes blunt views) discusses about it.Here is the Q&A :

" Q (Shekhar Gupta) : Before I let you go Venkat, let me take you back to your playing days, your two stints as captain in the World Cups when India didn’t have a very good one day team. And there was this match which everyone talks about.

A (Venkat) : You are referring to the match against England in the first World Cup at Lord’s.

Q : Yes, a 60-over match and Gavaskar 36 not out.

A: It left a very, very, bad taste. He let the team down, the spectators down, the spirit of the game down. I don’t know what happened to him. Afterwards he can say that he can’t explain it but...

Q: In his autobiography, he says that he tried to score runs, but each time he hit a shot, it just went straight to a fielder. But did you have a gentle discussion with him after that?

A: Of course I did.

P.S : After seeing the Zidane episode, I could only think of how Sportng demi-gods sometimes seem mere mortals.That is the beauty of sports. It makes heroes out of men and men out of heroes. Be it Soccer or Cricket or any other game.


  • //It makes heroes out of men and men out of heroes//
    wow, the great voice of a fan.

    By Blogger ILA (a) இளா, at 11:06 PM  

  • then why we do heroship when they r only humans
    now the hype abt dhoni and sania lead to the samething

    By Blogger Slice Of Life, at 12:03 AM  

  • Aren't we all looking for heroes in others, and given an oppurtunity make them as heroes and at the same time bring then down again?


    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 9:49 PM  

  • I think it was more of a conspiracy to let Venkat down by the Mumbai lobby which was dominating the Indian cricket at that point of time.Every time they didn't find any takers for the captaincy it was passed on to poor guys like Venkat
    Otherwise how can a captain(Venkat) in an earlier match against WI be the 12th man in the next test in front of his own crowd which was still sporting enough to applaud the Indian team.

    By Blogger RK, at 6:13 PM  

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