For many who are nonetheless alive to recollect the early days of Indian cricket within the Sixties and early 70s, one factor that is still etched within the reminiscence of virtually everyone seems to be that if the viewers wished an enormous hit, Durani duly sure.
The 90,000 spectators on the then raucous Eden Gardens would make optimum use of their lungs, shouting “Sixerrr, Sixerrr”. And legend has it that the very subsequent ball would both fly over lengthy on or into the deep midwicket stand.
Salim Durani handed away
Durani was a ‘man of the individuals’ whose affect can by no means be overstated by the 29 Take a look at matches he performed over 13 years between 1960 and 1973, or the greater than 1200 runs he scored and 75 wickets, which he took together with his left arm. Took with Ok spin. ,
The 88-year-old breathed his final on Sunday however will at all times be the primary and solely Afghanistan-born cricketer to play Take a look at cricket for India.Prince Salimof Indian cricket Salim Brother to all, younger and previous, and Salim Chacha to Gavaskar.
He was a “prince” when it comes to conduct and in addition received many hearts.
A lone century, three five-wicket hauls, and a batting common of over 25 do not inform the entire story.
At a time when Take a look at match charges have been Rs 300, Durani was extra of an beginner, whose solely agenda was to take pleasure in and let others have enjoyable.
Gavaskar’s 774 in his debut Take a look at collection within the West Indies in 1971 was a pivotal second in Indian cricket historical past, because the nation received its first collection within the Caribbean.
However had ‘Prince Salim’ not obtained Clive Lloyd and Sir Garfield Sobers in the identical spell, would India have received that Take a look at match at Port of Spain as West Indies collapsed of their second innings, leaving the guests a straightforward goal Gone to observe Durrani’s bowling figures of two/21 in 17 overs have been typically drowned out by the flood of runs scored within the collection by Gavaskar and Dilip Sardesai (over 600).
What if Durrani had not bowled his prodigious “break again” ball, which skimmed squarely between the bat and pad of a technocrat like Sir Garry from outdoors off stump.
However, for the following tour of England, he was dropped because the institution, pushed primarily by the Mumbai foyer, believed he didn’t have the method to outlive in English circumstances.
College students of Indian cricket historical past might discover it stunning that Durani performed all his abroad Checks within the West Indies over two excursions, enjoying eight out of a complete of 29 Checks.
Throughout his worldwide profession of practically a decade and a half, India toured 3 times to England (1967, 1971, 1974), as soon as to Australia (1967) in addition to New Zealand (1967), West Indies (1962 and 1971).
In truth, Port of Spain was as expensive to Durani because the latter grew to become to Gavaskar.
In 1962, a specialist middle-order batsman went at No. 3 with Dreadful we’ll doThe intelligent Gary Sobers and the good Lance Gibbs are asking probing questions. The consequence was a profession finest innings complete of 104 as India adopted on.
Why he couldn’t go on any of the excursions to Australia, England and New Zealand is past anybody’s understanding, as beneath common gamers have been chosen at a time when benefit was typically compromised.
former captain of bengal Raju MukherjeeAn avid pupil of cricket historical past wrote in his weblog how Durani made gentle of his exclusion.
Salim bhai, why did not they take you to England? Individuals would ask and he would say, “Possibly it was too chilly for me”.
However then why did not they take you to Australia? “Possibly it was too sizzling for me”.
There was ache however the humorousness by no means left him. In truth, after scoring a half-century towards England at his favourite Eden Gardens, Durani was dropped for the Kanpur Take a look at, and the Indian crew was subjected to hooting and posters of “No Salim, No Take a look at”.
Until that point, Durani was not bowling a lot as the good Bishan Bedi Bhagwat Chandrasekhar, Erapalli Prasanna and others have been main the Indian assault. Srinivasa Venkataraghavan for firm.
He was introduced again for the Bombay Take a look at, the place he scored 73 within the first innings with 10 fours and two sixes, and 37 within the second. Sadly, this turned out to be his final Take a look at, as he was not chosen for the 1974 tour of England.
He continued to play Ranji Trophy for Rajasthan and ended a distinguished first-class profession in 1976–77 with 8545 runs and 484 wickets, when he was in his mid-40s.
One-day cricket started in direction of the tip of his profession, and no person is aware of what the chances may need been if his finest years had been the limited-overs format.
If one scanned YouTube for the highlights that the Movies Division used to compile previous to the debut of a movie within the Sixties and early 70s, one might see footage of Durani’s exploits. He had a really economical motion and appeared very correct with a side-on pivot.
His batting was unorthodox and entertaining, however fielding was anathema to Durani, which noticed him fall out of favor with the selectors, who believed he was not hard-working sufficient.
Nonetheless, in his 29 Checks, each time he took wickets or scored half-centuries, India both received or saved the sport.
Born throughout British rule on a practice to Kabul, his father Abdul Aziz Durani was knowledgeable cricketer and had moved from Kabul to Jamnagar (Saurashtra), and stored wicket within the pentagular match within the Forties.
The Pathan blood in him made Durani a brave cricketer who was comfy towards Corridor’s bouncers, and had an enormous coronary heart when it got here to taking care of junior cricketers.
Gavaskar described an incident in his ebook Sunny Days, when he was touring by practice to play a home sport. It was chilly contained in the compartment and one of many cricketers was shivering for need of a blanket.
Durani did not say a phrase, however when the boy awoke within the morning, he noticed that he had a blanket and was huddled in a nook to keep off the chilly.
“Cash is one factor Salim can by no means afford,” was the phrase in Indian cricket circles.
Mukherjee wrote that after in 1976, throughout a Moeen ud Daulah match, Durani loaned him cash and shared drinks with him.
“Salim Durrani was a free spirit with out a look after yesterday. There have been no inhibitions; no vanity. He borrowed cash and purchased beer and coke to share with the ‘creditor’!
Learn one final interview of Salim Durani right here
“The subsequent day in probably the most delicate manner, he left the precise quantity within the man’s shirt pocket! I can verify the incident as a result of the particular person was me.” Wrote in his weblog.
There was a humorous incident when Durrani obtained a prank name from a teammate posing as a fan who wished to current him a tape recorder for his great collection successful bowling within the Windies.
Apparently, Durrani, wearing an India tie and blazer, got here into the lodge foyer and somebody from behind shouted, “So that you want a tape recorder”. It was his accomplice Dilip Sardesai.
He appeared strikingly good-looking in images from the Sixties and 70s, and starred in a movie referred to as Charitra reverse Parveen Babi, although the movie flopped on the field workplace. The provide to develop into a hero within the early 70s was an indicator of his reputation.
In 2018, when Afghanistan performed their first Take a look at in Bengaluru, Durrani was felicitated by the Indian board for his Afghan roots.
An easygoing man, who by no means understood how nice a participant he was, Durani will perpetually be”Prince SalimWithin the hearts of his followers.