Farokh Engineer Feels The 1971 Win In England Put India On The Cricketing Map

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Farokh Engineer Feels The 1971 Win In England Put India On The Cricketing Map
Farokh Engineer Feels The 1971 Win In England Put India On The Cricketing Map

Former Indian cricketer Farokh Engineer believes that India’s famous victory in England during the 1971 tour put India on the cricketing map. Following the current Team India’s win at Lord’s, Engineer opened up on the olden days and the impact the 1971 win at The Oval had on the cricketing future in India.

England put up 355 on the board in the first innings. In their pursuit of the total, India slipped to 125/5 but fought back with a 97-run partnership between Engineer and Eknath Solkar to reach 284. In the third innings, Bhagwat Chandrasekhar spun a web around the Englishmen and took 6/38 which left India with a target of 173. They managed to achieve it with four wickets to spare, with Engineer’s unbeaten 28 taking the team over the line. In a conversation with TOI, Engineer said:

Do people still remember that victory? I’d like to think that we put India on the cricketing map. 1971 was a great year for Indian cricket. Earlier that year, we beat the West Indies in their own den for the first time.

Bhagwat Chandrasekhar, Farokh Engineer
Bhagwat Chandrasekhar

What a series that was, especially that Oval Test. We had a great chance to win on the last day. I remember we were in trouble in the first innings before my partnership with Eki [Solkar] saw us through. I told Eki, let’s fight for every run and he responded brilliantly,” Engineer said.

Farokh Engineer recalls the winning moments with Abid Ali

Engineer, who has played 46 Tests for India, recollected the events on the last day of The Oval Test when Gundappa Viswanath was dismissed when India was just four runs away from the win. It was a very tense atmosphere and Abid Ali joined Engineer at the crease.

I told Abid that Bishan [Bedi] and Chandra weren’t exactly great with the bat so ‘don’t take any chances. We’ve got to win this game and the series.’

And what did he do? The first ball he faced, he charged down the track only for Alan Knott to miss the stumping chance. I scolded him: ‘Don’t take any chances. We’ve just three runs left. Kya kar raha hai?’.

Abid Ali
Abid Ali after scoring the winning runs.

Luckily for Engineer, Abid held his own following the advice and India managed to eke out a 4-wicket victory that registered India’s first win on English soil.

And what did Abid Ali do with my advice? Next ball, he late cut it through point and before the ball reached the fence, the crowd came in and the umpires declared it as a boundary.

Abid had faced just four balls, but because he hit the winning shot, he was carried by the Indian supporters. It was all amusing to see for someone like me, who had batted for 90 minutes to ensure that we won!” revealed Engineer.

After the series victory in England in 1971, Team India managed to repeat the feat only two more times. Once in 1986 under Kapil Dev, and the other in 2007 under Rahul Dravid.

Also ReadVirender Sehwag Terms Harbhajan Singh As The Biggest Prankster During His Playing Days

The post Farokh Engineer Feels The 1971 Win In England Put India On The Cricketing Map appeared first on CricketAddictor.

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