24 September, 2020

Always In The Loop

If the purist says he does not really spin the ball then how is a turning wicket going to help him? We cannot argue things both ways.

Always In The Loop
It doesn’t seem that long ago when I first bumped into Anil Kumble. I remember it so vividly. I had heard so much about this lanky spinner who had modelled himself along the lines of B.S. Chandrashekhar. I was curious to see this man who had generated so much interest.

It was 1989 and the Wills Trophy was in progress. I bumped into him at the hotel while we were in transit. He looked more like a studious academician who belonged in a classroom rather than on the cricket field. I was trying to make a comeback into the Indian cricket team and like many others who were on the fringes, it was a very important tournament. I knew that the selectors would have Kumble at the back of their mind. I also knew the final race to the coveted spinner’s spot would be between Anil and me.

As destiny would have it, Anil was the spinner picked to tour England soon after. His selection raised quite a few eyebrows. I for one was not surprised. Throughout the tournament Kumble showed, what has now become his hallmark, a sense of determination and earnestness.

I had a close look at...



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