- He was the captain who gave Team India the belief to win overseas
Sourav Ganguly, famously known as “Dada” was the face which any player would remember as one of the All-time greats. His resilience and intellect on-pitch is widely appreciated by all but his squad selections and nurturing of the young guns has what made him one of the most loved Indian captains of all time.
The “Prince of Bengal” showed India how to win series’ on foreign lands. He was indeed the phenomenon that India needed to be considered as a Top team. Ganguly, who turned 48 today (8th July 2020) was the game-changer for India in the early 2000s.
Dada took over the captaincy when Indian cricket was going through a huge turmoil, the worst of its kind, on and off-field.
Ganguly managed to take the team out from the shadow of infamous match-fixing controversies to create a team which has eventually dominated all formats of the game. Now working as the BCCI President, Ganguly gave the opportunity to India’s some of the greatest match-winners like Yuvraj Singh, Harbhajan Singh, Virender Sehwag, Zaheer Khan and Mahendra Singh Dhoni.
Sourav Ganguly was not just the captain of India, he was the leader that India looked upto. He would personally look into the squad selections and would stand against any wrong decisions with valor and confidence. He was a really feared leader amongst those who tried to destroy the Indian team’s efforts in their conquests to rule the cricket world. Sachin Tendulkar, Anil Kumble, Rahul Dravid, VVS Laxman, and countless other legends speak highly of Sourav as their captain.
Under Ganguly, the ‘Men in Blue’ played 146 ODI matches. They won 76 matches, and lost 65 matches, while 5 matches went into a no result. Dada’s ODI’s win percentage was at 53.90.He also guided the team in the white jersey to 21 wins, of the 49 matches he led. His Test side lost 13 and tied/drew 15 matches, making his Test win percentage 42.85.
If we look at Dada’s home and away Test and ODI records, he led the ODI team to 24 wins out of the 51 away games, lost in the same number of matches and tied/no result in 3.While in the away Tests, Dada captained in 28 matches and won 11 and lost 10. His team drew in 7 red-ball matches.
He is regarded as one of the best captains that have led the Indian cricket team. One of our favourite memories of Dada in a foreign land was of the 2002 Natwest Series. His famous celebration at the balcony of the Lords’, after India’s rather improbable win against England remains firmly etched in the minds of millions of cricketing fans across the world.
“Dada” wasn’t just a captain but an amazing batsmen too, being in the top 10 for the highest run-getters having scored more than 18000 runs across all formats. He was also a handy bowler if the team required one. He is famously know as the “God of Off-side” as his full-fledged drives over his offside were inevitable boundaries.
Now, as the BCCI president, Sourav has rightfully being paid the dues that the Indian cricket board left him with when he was forced to quit the Indian team over a massive controversy with the then India Coach, Greg Chappell.