Farewell Bishan Singh Bedi, your left-arm spin had left the batters mesmerised
By Sunil Sarpal
At one point in time, India’s cup for fast bowling was empty. At that time, the lone fast bowler representing India was Kapil Dev. During that time India introduced a 3-pronged spin quartet of Bedi, Prasanna and Chandrasekhar.
India also produced spin-friendly pitches so that they can thrive on the advantage against opposition.
During the same period, simultaneously Clive Lloyd of West Indies introduced a 4-pronged pace attack to ridicule the world. Those bowlers were all charged and raring-to-go in order to break the opposition into pieces. They were Malcolm Marshal, Joel Garner, Andy Roberts and Machiel Holding, with the bench strength of Colin Croft.
With the kind of attack India had at its disposal, they could not pose much of problems to opposition, especially West Indies.
But Bishan Singh Bedi’s left-arm spin left the batters mesmerised with subtle variations. He was one cog in the Indian armoury who never diminished.
Bedi is no more. At the age of 77 yrs, recently he passed away. Bedi was an out-spoken character. He single-handedly fought for the cause of players. He also imparted his art of spin bowling to budding cricketers. In fact Bedi was considered leader among three spinners.
After his playing days, Bedi also held the position of Manager for Team India. But his stint as Manager did not prove result oriented.
Now India’s cup of bowling is brimming with quality batsmen, spinners and seamers alike. India no more relies on spin-friendly pitches. Even quality players do not find a place in the side and have to cool their heels on the bench.
On the contrary, West Indies is no longer a team to reckon with. They even could not qualify to play for the ICC World Cup. West indies athletes are not much interested in playing cricket and switched alliance towards basketball which is a comparatively much more lucrative sport.
It is heartening to note that India’s graph in cricket is on the up-swing whereas West Indies is left far behind in the race.