It’s nearly been a month since the demise of Bishan Singh Bedi but the former India captain keeps getting remembered by those who played with him at that time. At the Reliance Digital presents 92nd annual prize distribution function of The Times Cricket Shield for the year 2022-2023, former India left-arm seamer Karsan Ghavri narrated an interesting incident while playing under Bedi’s captaincy when he took five wickets bowling left-arm spin, to which Bedi was really surprised.
Bishan Singh Bedi and Karsan Ghavri Cricket Moments
Ghavri said, “I was basically a left-arm spinner. Out of my 109 Test wickets, only eight have come bowling left-arm spin. During a test match with England at Wankhede in 1976, Bedi who was the captain of the team, went to the dressing room for some massage. Sunil Gavaskar who was the vice-captain asked me to bowl and I bowled for nearly eight to nine overs and took five wickets and England were all out”, recalled Ghavri to a warm appreciation and applause.
He then continued by saying, “As we were off to the dressing room, Bishan Singh Bedi came out and said, “I am ready to bowl”. But when he saw everyone coming back from the field he was surprised and asked our manager “What’s happening?” To which he replied, “England was bowled out”. “How” Bishan Singh Bedi asked. “Ghavri took five wickets”, the manager replied. “Did we take the new ball”, Bishan Singh Bedi asked. “No, he balled spin”, the manager replied. “Really”, Bishan Singh Bedi was surprised.
Ghavri’s success as a left-arm spinner then went on to land him in ‘trouble’ with the captain.
Ghavri further added, “In the dressing room, Bishan Singh Bedi came close to me, and told me to stop bowling. ‘Why paaji. I just took five wickets,’ I asked. ‘No, forget in the match, don’t even bowl in the nets,’ he said. He also said, “If you take so many wickets, what will I do”?
Ghavri, a popular cricketer of the 70s and early 80s, became nostalgic at the event and recalled his long association with the Times Shield as a player. “It’s a premier cricket tournament in Mumbai and I played for 18 years in Times Shield. I played for five years for ACC, with greats like Polly Umrigar, Bapu Nadkarni, Ramakant Desai and Dilip Sardesai as my teammates, and later Sunil Gavaskar joined us in 1971.
Later on, I switched to JK Chemicals. Today, it’s called Raymonds. Vijayapat Singhania and Tiger Pataudi insisted that we form a team and join Times Shield. That side was very competent, and it had players like Mohinder and Surinder Amarnath. But that team was only for three years.”
Ghavri’s third and final team was Nirlon Sports Club. He urged the Times group to start a similar competition for women too. Women should also get more opportunities to play so that they get more job opportunities, more matches and basically more competitive cricket.
Read more about Karsan Ghavri – A Self-made All Rounder.