Remembering Lata 1983, Colonel expects Team India to be in tune
By Ashok Venugopal | Express News Service | Published: 20th May 2017 01:47 AM |
CHENNAI: In 1983, after India won the World Cup in England, the BCCI announced a cash prize for the players. But there was a problem. The board had no money. So at the request of the then BCCI president NKP Salve, Lata Mangeshkar sang at a concert without charging a rupee and the board used the money raised to reward the champions.
In a fitting tribute to the Nightingale of India, Dilip Vengsarkar on Friday released a book On Stage with Lata, co-authored by the singer’s niece Rachana Shah, at a befitting function backed by AMN Global Group.
“Her fondness for cricket, especially in India and England, was amazing,” said Vengsarkar, a member of the 1983 team.
“She was a regular at matches. She did a concert at the instance of the then board president and each one of us got a fairly good sum,” recollected the former India captain, welcoming the of AMN Global Group initiative.
“We were all fans of her and enjoyed her songs. There are many songs which are memorable and it is difficult to pick one,” added Vengsarkar, enjoying a kathak recital by Sharmistha Mukherjee and her troupe.
Coming to cricket, the ‘Colonel’ is confident that Virat Kohli and his boys can defend the Champions Trophy if they play to potential.
“We have a strong team and I’m confident we can defend the title. The boys are playing IPL, but Champions Trophy is a different format. I think they can settle down and do a good job,” opined the batsman with three centuries at Lord’s.
The selectors have gone for experience, with a dash of youth. The likes of Jasprit Bumrah will be playing in England for the first time. “The team has a good mixture of experience and youth. Conditions in England will favour seamers, but one must get the balance right.
Ashwin and Jadeja will be our key spinners and then an all-rounder must chip in. I think in a tournament like this, the all-rounder will be the key to success,” said the former selection committee chief.
Kohli had a poor IPL as a captain and failed to get the best out of his famed team. Will it have an effect in England? “I’m confident that he (Virat) will settle down as a captain in England as the team and format is different,” opined Vengsarkar.
At a time when critics are going after him, MS Dhoni has been splendid behind the stumps. “Dhoni has improved a lot as a keeper over the years. It’s not surprising the way he performed in IPL. He will do well in England too,” he said.
“Yuvraj has got a good opportunity, he should make the most of it. Since he is not playing Tests, he should all the more utilise the opportunity.”