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Remembering Spin Legend Sonny Ramadhin

By Rediff Cricket
February 28, 2022 13:00 IST
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From Rohan Kanhai the swashbuckler to Alvin Kallicharan to Shivnarine Chanderpaul to Ramnaresh Sarwan to Sunil Narine, Indian origin cricketers from the Caribbean have often been the toast of the cricketing world.

But the pioneer, the first Indian to play for the West Indies, was Sonny Ramadhin, the mystery spinner from Trinidad who bamboozled England in 1950.

Mr Ramadhin and his spin twin Alf Valentine spun the West Indies to its first victory at Lord's and their first series win against England.

Named a Wisden Cricketer of the Year the next year, 1951, he played 43 Tests and took 158 wickets at an average of 28.98.

Like his fellow Indo-Trinidadian V S Naipaul, who also left for England the same year (1990) as Mr Ramadhin did, he settled down in the mother country, married an Englishwoman and had the pleasure of seeing his grandson Kyle Hogg play for Lancashire.

The legendary spinner passed into the ages on Sunday, February 27, and cricket lovers who would like to know more about this amazing cricketer could check here, here and here. (all external links).

Please click on the images for glimpses of the West Indian spin legend.

IMAGE: Sonny Ramadhin was 91 when he passed away on Sunday.
Photograph: Topical Press/Getty Images

 

IMAGE: Sonny Ramadhin at the West Indies versus Cambridge University match, June 1950.
Photograph: Hulton Archive/Getty Images

 

IMAGE: Sonny Ramadhin bowls Tom Graveney during the final Test at the Oval, August 23, 1957.
Photograph: Central Press/Getty Images

 

IMAGE: Sonny Ramadhin demonstrates his mystery grip to an intrigued Donald Bradman in Brisbane during a Test match in the early 1950s.
Photograph: Central Press/Getty Images

 

IMAGE: Sonny Ramadhin in action during a Test in England, June 1957.
Photograph: Central Press/Hulton Archive/Getty Images

 

IMAGE: Sonny Ramadhin, circa 1950.
Photograph: Central Press/Getty Images

 

IMAGE: West Indian spin legends Alf Valentine, right, and Sonny Ramadhin during their tour of England, April 1950. Mr Ramadhin was the final member of the 1950 West Indies team to pass into the ages.
Photograph: Jimmy Sime/Getty Images

 

IMAGE: The West Indies fielders appeal as England batsman Doug Insole is stumped and dismissed for 0 by West Indies wicket-keeper Clyde Walcott off a delivery by Sonny Ramadhin during the second innings of the third Test, July 24, 1950 at the Trent Bridge cricket ground.
The West Indies won the match by 10 wickets and and won the series against England by three matches to one.
Photograph: Central Press/Hulton Archive/Getty Images

 

IMAGE: A team picture of the 1950 West Indies team, taken April 28, 1950: Back row from left to right, C B Williams (Cecil Beaumont Williams, 1926-1998), Roy Edwin Marshall (1930-1992), Alfred Louis Valentine (1930-2004), Lancelot Richard Pierre (1921-1989), Clyde Leopold Walcott (1926-2006), Hophnie Hobah Hines Johnson (1910-1987), Allan Fitzroy Rae (1922-2005), Kenneth Basil Trestrail (1927-1992) and the baggage manager Mr Ferguson.
Front row, from left to right, Sonny Ramadhin (1929-2022), Prior Erskine Waverly Jones (1917-1991), Frank Mortimer Maglinne Worrell (1924-1967), the assistant manager, Mr Palmer Barnes, the captain John Douglas Claude Goddard (1919-1987), Gerald Etheridge Gomez (1919-1996), Jeffrey Baxter Stollmeyer (1921 - 1989), Robert Julian Christiani and Everton de Courcy Weekes (1925-2020).
Photograph: Douglas Miller/Keystone/Getty Images

 

 

Photographs curated by Manisha Kotian/Rediff.com
Feature Presentation: Ashish Narsale/Rediff.com

 
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