5 captaincy decisions taken by Sourav Ganguly that changed Indian cricket
A team which had been hit with match-fixing, a nation with head held low and amidst all, the game which is pious to many stood ravaged. Stepping in like a man possessed, and taking issues head-on, Sourav Ganguly not only revamped the entire team but instilled a sense of pride in the way we watched cricket.
He transformed a bunch of highly talented individuals from meek personalities to combative egos who were no longer afraid to take on the world. The Indian cricket team was now known as Team India, and the journey towards glory thus began .
As the 'Bengal Tiger' turns 44, we take a look at the top 5 captaincy decisions taken by Dada over his career.
1. Winning the toss and electing to bat on a cloudy Headingley
The third Test during the 2002 tour to England was held at Leeds, Headingley which is known everywhere for its grey clouds and green tracks, conditions which are alien to the Indian team.
Ganguly won the toss and to everyone's surprise elected to bat in conditions which were tailor-made for seam bowlers. The reason behind this decision was that India had two spinners in their ranks in the form of Anil Kumble and Harbhajan Singh, and the skipper wanted them to exploit conditions on the fourth and fifth days.
This proved to be a masterstroke as India amassed 628 runs in the first innings. England could never recover from this pressure and in what added sheen to the performance was that Anil Kumble picked up 4 wickets in the final innings. India went on to win the match by an innings and 46 runs.
The duo of Harbhajan and Kumble also picked up 3 wickets in the first innings, and Dada's prophetic decision stood vindicated.