One of the greatest underdog tales in sports history is that of India’s maiden 1983 World Cup final win over West Indies at the iconic Lord’s cricket ground in London.
Team India, against all the odds, went on to defend a meagre total of 183 against the mighty West Indies. Clive Lloyd and co. were the undisputed champions of the game during the 70s and 80s, where they won first two titles.
The two-time title winners, then, could not defend their title and lost their reign to India, who marked the birth of a new age in cricket.
Now, opening batsman, Krishnamachari Srikkanth went back in time to recall the memories of India’s historic win.
Srikkanth has tagged the pep-talk given by the then Indian captain, Kapil Dev, responsible for the team able to defend a ‘hopeless’ 183 runs against a world-beating side.
“With the batting line-up that West Indian had and looking at 183, we thought we had no scope at all,” Srikkanth said on Star Sports 1 Tamil show ‘Winning the Cup 1983’.
“But Kapil Dev said one thing and he didn’t say we can win, but he said — look guys we have got out for 183, and we should give resistance and not give away the match so easily,” the Tamil-Nadu cricketer added.
Further, Srikkanth reckoned that the historic win was a turning point in Indian cricket, as it produced several generations of world-class cricketers henceforth.
“It was the turning point for Indian cricket and for Indians. At a time when cricket was dominated by West Indies, Australia, New Zealand, and others, a total underdog Indians became the world champions,” he said.
“We did not feel that much pressure. Because favorites were West Indies, they were 1975 and 1979 champions, dominating world cricket, so we thought it was a big deal making it to the finals itself,” Srikkanth concluded.