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The Stars Who Won Us The 1983 World Cup

June 25, 2023 08:42 IST
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IMAGE: Captain Kapil Dev and Mohinder Amarnath celebrate after winning the 1983 World Cup final against the West Indies at Lord's, June 25, 1983 Photograph: Adrian Murrell/Allsport//Getty Images

June 25, 2023 marks the 40th anniversary of one of India's greatest sporting triumph -- the 1983 cricket World Cup triumph!

India, led by 24-year-old Kapil Dev, shocked the cricketing world as they upset the mighty West Indies in the final to win their first World Cup.

While it was a collective team effort from the Indians, there were some great individual performances along the way including Kapil's sensational match-turning knock of 175 not out against Zimbabwe, some fine all-round performances from Mohinder Amarnath, the late Yashpal Sharma's superb knock against the West Indies in the opening match, consistent bowling performances from the pace duo of Roger Binny and Madan Lal.

A look at how the Indian players fared during the 1983 World Cup:

Kapil Dev (captain)

The young Kapil Dev proved to be an inspirational captain for India in the 1983 World Cup.

His incredible innings of 175 from 138 balls on a seaming track, which saw India recover from 17/5 must-win match against Zimbabwe, is rated as one of the greatest knocks in One-Day Internationals.

Unfortunately, there was no video coverage of Kapil's magical knock as broadcaster BBC was on strike that day!

One of the leading all-rounders of his era, Kapil led from the front with both bat and ball -- scoring 303 runs in eight games at a strike rate of 108, while picking up 12 wickets at an economy rate of 2.91.

His brilliant catch, running backwards at square leg, to dismiss the dangerous Viv Richards proved to the turning point in the final as India successfully defended a lowly 183 against the West Indies.

Mohinder Amarnath

Jimmy Amarnath played a pivotal role in India winning its first World Cup.

Unfortunately, there was no man of the series award else Amarnath would have bagged the award for his tally of 237 runs and eight wickets. In fact, he was instrumental in India's victory in the semi-final and final, and was named the man of the match in both games.

Amarnath bowled a match-winning spell of 3/12 in seven overs in the final against the West Indies, while also scoring 26 in India's 183 all out.

He also starred with both bat and ball in the semi-final against England, taking 2/27 in 12 overs, while scoring a handy 46.

In the absence of a coach, it was senior pro Amarnath who took up the responsibility of helping the young Kapil Dev in key team decisions like playing XI, batting order and bowling choices.

Sunil Gavaskar

The legendary SMG had a forgettable World Cup as he managed just 59 runs from six games.

But he played a crucial knock of 25 in the semi-final against England, putting on 46 runs for the opening wicket with Kris Srikkanth as India successfully chaseD down 214.

He also played a part in the final against the West Indies with two important catches -- to dismiss Larry Gomes and Malcolm Marshall.

Gavaskar was also credited with bringing luck to the team. Gavaskar had a poor start with 19 and 4 in the first two matches both of which India won against the West Indies and Zimbabwe respectively.

However, he was dropped for the next two games as Dilip Vengsakar was picked in his place, who could only play two games before he was struck on the chin by a bouncer from Malcolm Marshall and was ruled out of the rest of the World Cup.

India lost both the matches in which Gavaskar didn't play -- against Australia and the West Indies.

Gavaskar then replaced the injured Vengsarkar and the team was back to its winning ways.

Kris Srikkanth

Srikkanth was the top scorer from either side in the final.

After Gavaskar's early dismissal, the swashbuckling Srikkanth went on the offensive as he hit 38, with seven fours and a six -- which proved instrumental in India getting to 183, despite losing their last six wickets for 73 runs.

His highest score was 39 made against Australia while he also slammed a quickfire 24 from 22 balls against the same opponents to finish with 156 runs from eight games.

Interestingly, Srikkanth was the chairman of selectors of the Indian team which won its second ODI World Cup after a long gap of 28 years -- in 2011.

Yashpal Sharma

Having started the World Cup as rank underdogs, Yashpal Sharma gave India the belief with a classy 89 from 120 balls to help his team shock the mighty West Indies by 34 runs in their opening match.

Batting at No 5, Yashpal was at his belligerent best as he came out all guns blazing against the West Indian pace battery of Michael Holding, Andy Roberts, Malcolm Marshall and Joel Garner.

Yashpal, who passed away two years ago, also starred with a cracking innings of 61 against England in the semi-final, while he made a quickfire 40 to power India to a huge 118-run victory against Australia.

Sandeep Patil

Patil played quite a few entertaining knocks during the World Cup, scoring 216 runs in eight games at a strike rate of 90, with two fifties.

Patil slammed 50 from 54 balls against Zimbabwe, before smashing a quickfire 30 from 25 balls against Australia.

He reserved his best for the semi-final against hosts England, blazing his way to 51 from just 32 balls, with eight boundaries, before scoring a vital 27 from 29 balls in the final against the West Indies.

Syed Kirmani

Kirmani excelled with both gloves and bat during the 1983 World Cup. He played a crucial role with the bat with a solid knock of 24 not out, putting togther an unbroken stand of 166 runs for the ninth wicket with Kapil Dev, who smashed 175 not out, in the must-win match against Zimbabwe.

Kirmani was very dependable with the gloves, accounting for 14 dismissals in the tournament -- including 12 catches and two stumpings.

Roger Binny

Binny was the highest wicket-taker in the World Cup with 18 wickets from eight matches at an economy rate of 3.81.

Binny and fellow pacer Madan Lal ripped apart the Australian batting line-up with figures of 4/20 to power India to a crushing 118 run victory.

He picked up three wickets each in the two league matches against the West Indies, and in the final claimed West Indies Captain Clive Lloyd's vital wicket for eight.

Batting at No 8, he played a couple of important knocks with the bat -- including 27 vs the West Indies, 22 vs Zimbabwe and 21 vs Australia.

Madan Lal

Madan Lal wrecked the West Indies batting line-up in the final, with the big wickets of Desmond Haynes, Viv Richards and Larry Gomes, for match-turning figures of 3/31 in 12 overs.

Overall, Lal finished a close second in the wicket-takers' list with 17 wickets from eight games.

Balwinder Sandhu

Sandhu's wonder delivery became the talking point of the World Cup.

He will be always remembered for that special delivery which left Gordon Greenidge dumb-founded.

One of the best batters of his era, the West Indian opener offered no stroke to the medium pacer only to see the ball swing in quite a bit and crash into his stumps.

That early wicket set the tone for India's magnificent showing with the ball as they staged one of the greatest comebacks in the history of cricket, bowling out the West Indies for 140 after they had managed just 183 with the bat.

Sandhu played his part with the ball, finishing with eight wickets in as many matches.

Dilip Vengsarkar

Vengsarkar could play only two games in the World Cup. He made 32 against the West Indies before he was struck on the chin by a bouncer from Malcolm Marshall.

Ravi Shastri

In his first World Cup, all-rounder Shastri could not make much of an impact.

He played a limited role in the World Cup, featuring in just five games in which he claimed four wickets, while scoring 40 runs.

The 21 year old didn't make it to the team for the last few games, including the semi-final and the final.

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