With another feather in his illustrious cap, veteran Indian Cricketer, Rahul Dravid was recently inducted into the ICC Hall of Fame for his unforgettable contributions to the game of Cricket.
Along with Dravid, Australian legend Ricky Ponting and England woman wicketkeeper-batter Claire Taylor were also named in the ‘Hall of Fame’ during a ceremony in Dublin on July 1.
The honour is highly exclusive and therefore Dravid is just the fifth Indian to join this elite list which houses Indian cricketing greats like Bishan Singh Bedi, Anil Kumble, Kapil Dev and Sunil Gavaskar.
“It is a matter of great honour to be named by the ICC in the Cricket Hall of Fame. To find your name in a list of all-time greats across generations is something one only dreams of while setting out on a cricket career and the kind of recognition that would delight any player”
Why We Shouldn’t Let Dravid Be An Unsung Hero
Whenever cricket in India is talked about, the first name that comes to the mind is Sachin, and probably Kohli.
Dravid has forever remained on the sidelines, always under the shadow of the big names because well truly, he’s the “Boy-Next-Door” of Indian Cricket.
Dravid, who scored a whopping 13,288 runs in 164 Tests with 36 centuries and 10,889 runs in 344 ODIs with 12 centuries is still not given his due.
Fans rave about Sachin, Sehwag, Kohli, Rohit, Kapil Dev, Ganguly because we all often unknowingly tend to equate sport to a certain amount of aggression, fury on the pitch which Dravid wasn’t seen to exhibit. He only exuded calm and class while on the field.
Rahul Dravid never had to put on an act on the field. He was and still remains cricket’s “Nice Guy”.
Without disregarding the other cricketers’ achievements, I don’t want Dravid to be talked about only when we speak about him being a perfect gentleman on field.
He should be remembered for his aggressive, dependable knocks that came in penultimate hours rather than just his act of niceties on the pitch.
Why Dravid Was Much More Than Just A Side Player
Dravid was India’s dependable rock. The Wall which couldn’t be pierced through.
His experience was immensely invaluable at No.3 in Tests and in the middle order in ODI cricket. While the likes of Tendulkar, Ganguly, Sehwag won fans with their aggression, Dravid was often seen as the teammate on the side.
And this is probably why Rahul Dravid needs to be talked about more.
When I had been younger, Sehwag, Pathan, Ganguly had been my favorites. Why? Because they were bold, dominant and fiery on the fields. But as I grew up, things changed.
When I look back at the highlights of our ODI series against Sri Lanka in 2005, I finally realize that maybe Dravid is my favorite after all.
Dravid had just become the captain and I still remember that afternoon because of the calm, poise and self-control he had shown. It was safe to say that he had effectively finished Sri Lanka with a 63-ball 85 not out when he took India to 350.
How Dravid Stayed Relevant After All These Years
Dravid’s unbeaten 75 off 36 balls against Rajasthan Royals in 2008’s IPL was enough to shut up the critics about his “retirement plans”.
He then later on migrated to Rajasthan Royals where he nurtured the likes of Sanju Samson, Karun Nair and it was almost safe to say that the future of Indian cricket was safe in Dravid’s hand.
And when I say the future of Indian cricket, I meant it because he also led India to the Under-19 World Cup’s final twice, and made sure we finally get it right in 2018.
Many top sportspersons have been compelled to pretend to be the icons of machismo, toughness, confidence because it made commercial sense, sold products and appealed to the cricket-watching youth.
But Dravid was different, he didn’t have to pretend. He was the nice guy, who let the bat do the talking for him.
No big words, no false promises, with him you always got to see what there was to see and today, we as a cricket frenzy nation have to honour this brilliant man and finally serve him thelong-awaitedd respect, esteem and gratitude that he deserves.
Image Credits: Google Images
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