Mohinder Amarnath (right) along with captain Kapil Dev won the 1983 World Cup title for India.Image Credit source: Twitter/Cricket World Cup
24th September is a date which has great importance in the history of Indian cricket. This date is related to such events, which have a deep connection with India becoming world champion for the first time. 16 years ago, on 24 September 2007, India defeated Pakistan in the final at the Wanderers Ground in Johannesburg and won the first T20 World Cup title. Under the captaincy of MS Dhoni, Team India became the first champion of the new format. But not only the T20 World Cup, but on September 24, many years ago, a player was born who was the hero of India’s first title. Name is- Mohinder Amarnath.
ODI World Cup 2023 is going to start in India from 5th October and in such a situation, this tournament is the topic of discussion in the cricket world at this time. Analysis, discussions, debates, records and old stories related to this are on the lips of fans and experts. In this too, when India is talked about, it is natural to always mention the 1983 World Cup because this was the World Cup when India surprised the entire cricket world and won the title. Mohinder Amarnath’s tremendous performance had written the story of that title win.
Cricket is in Amarnath’s blood
Today Mohinder has turned 73 years old. Mohinder, popularly known as ‘Jimmy’, had cricket in his blood. His father Lala Amarnath himself was a great Indian all-rounder, who scored the first Test century for the country. Mohinder’s brother Surinder Amarnath could not play much cricket but he also scored a century in his Test debut. As far as Mohinder is concerned, words fall short for him, he was such a wonderful and fighting player. He was the life of Indian batting along with Sunil Gavaskar and Dilip Vengsarkar in the 1970s and 1980s.
Made India world champion for the first time
The most brilliant moment of Mohinder’s career was also one of the most memorable moments of Indian cricket. On June 25, 1983, at Lord’s, Mohinder Amarnath, first with his bat and then with his bowling, stopped West Indies from winning the third consecutive title. In that final, Amarnath played a fighting inning of 26 runs against the lethal West Indies pace attack. After this, he won the title for India by taking three wickets of West Indies. Amarnath ended the match by giving Michael Holding out LBW and made India the champion. He was the player of the match of that final.
Joker had told the selectors
Amarnath was not only a combative cricketer, but was also a person who expressed his views fearlessly. Many examples of this have been seen during his cricket career and beyond. In the 1970s, when he was constantly being thrown in and out of the team without any reason, he without any fear called the selectors of that era a bunch of jokers. Not only this, when Amarnath himself became a selector many years later, he did not shy away from taking tough decisions. Even if the question is about removing World Cup winning captain MS Dhoni.
Wanted to snatch captaincy from Dhoni
India definitely won the World Cup in 2011-12 but also lost 8 consecutive Tests in England and Australia. In such a situation, Amarnath and two other selectors, who were part of the selection committee at that time, were in favor of removing Dhoni from the captaincy and had also proposed it, but the then BCCI President N Srinivasan had banned it. Even during that time, Dhoni was the captain of the IPL team Chennai Super Kings owned by Srinivasan’s company. Shortly after this proposal, Srinivasan was suddenly removed from the selection committee.
As far as Amarnath’s career is concerned, the former veteran all-rounder played 69 Tests in his career and scored 4378 runs, which included 11 centuries and 24 half-centuries. Apart from this, 32 wickets also came in his account. In 85 ODI matches, he scored 1924 runs with the help of 2 centuries and 13 half-centuries, while also taking 46 wickets.