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Reminiscing the 1983 victory

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THE DAY THAT MADE US PROUD: A Bishop Heber College cricketer explaining the significance of 1983 cricketing triumph during an interaction session in Tiruchi on Wednesday. —
THE DAY THAT MADE US PROUD: A Bishop Heber College cricketer explaining the significance of 1983 cricketing triumph during an interaction session in Tiruchi on Wednesday. —

G. Prasad

How Kapil’s Devils thrashed the Windies team which had very strong players

TIRUCHI: Despite a rigorous morning session on Wednesday, the freshness on the faces of the young sportsmen of Bishop Heber College remained intact.

Reason: On June 25 1983, the Indian cricket team led by Kapil Dev pulled off an coup feat by winning the Prudential World Cup in England. Physical Education Director L.C. John and the students were locked in an interesting discussion on the victory for about an hour in the silver jubilee year.

In fact, none in the group of students was born when Kapil’s Devils rewrote cricketing history, and all had learnt about it from books and DVDs. “The commitment and determination of the legendary cricketers will be a motivation forever,” said V. Pradeep Krishna, a second year student.

Defending a meagre total of 183 runs in the final against West Indies, the best side in the world then, sounds enthralling. In fact, India had scraped through the group stages owing to Kapil’s rescue act - the unbeaten 175 off 138 balls against Zimbabwe.

And his stunning catch to dismiss Vivian Richards in the final will be etched in the memories of cricket lovers. Reliving the moments of joy virtually, students also relished the performances of Kris Srikkanth (top scorer of the final) and vice-captain Mohinder Amarnath (Man of the Match in both the semis and finals).

When S. Mahadevan, another student, compared the recent victory of Team India in the T20 World Cup to that of the 1983 World Cup triumph, it opened up a debate. “We won against Pakistan in the final. Can there be any better win than the one against the arch rivals and that too in the summit clash of a World Cup?” questioned Mahadevan.

The captain of the Bishop Heber College cricket team J. Sudhakar had the answer: “T20 World Cup victory is a cherishable moment, no doubt. I don’t think it can measure up to the 1983 World Cup glory. We defeated an invincible West Indian side that had in its ranks some of the greatest players, the game has ever produced.”

And Mr. John was quick to interfere. “There is no point in comparing one victory with another. Each has its own significance.”

The discussion also encompassed the appreciation of feats registered in other sports. “We have won hockey World Cup as well. Also we are eight time Olympic gold medallists in hockey. Athletes like P.T. Usha and Shiny Wilson, weightlifter Karnam Malleswari, chess wizard Anand, shooter Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore and many others are also internationally acclaimed. We also need to extend such recognition to them,” the students felt.

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