Indian Heroes instrumental in the NatWest Series Victory of 2002
13th July 2002- A day which would be etched in the memories of Indian fans forever. A giant score on the board, a flamboyant start, the sudden collapse, and a partnership for the ages, this game was as dramatic as Shakespeare's literary artwork. Topped by euphoric celebrations of Sourav Ganguly.
The series in many ways was path-breaking for Indian cricket. It laid the foundation of a fearless team under Ganguly, a team which would later dominate sides at their own backyard from this inspired performance. It was also a stepping stone for a successful World Cup campaign that would follow in South Africa.
The decision to have batting depth till 7, and fulfilling the fifth bowler's quota from part timers, Ganguly's tactical prowess seemed to have shown a new path to the world. It also unleashed a prodigy of Indian cricket in the form of Yuvraj Singh, who would later be instrumental in two World Cup wins.
As the win completes its 16th anniversary, we have a look at the heroes of the tournament for India.
#5 Rahul Dravid
Rahul Dravid was given the wicket-keeping duties in the Natwest series. He also formed a vital cog in the middle order, coming in to bat at No.5, and had the responsibility of propelling the innings.
Dravid formed an instrumental part of the Indian victory on the English turf, as he made significant and consistent contributions with the bat. Along with Sachin Tendulkar, the veteran made most of the platform laid by the openers, which provided the opportunity for onslaught towards the end.
Dravid's stature as a technically profound batsman ushered a sense of calmness and stability in the batting line up, which laid the foundation of the victories.
He also proved crucial with his glovework, as he consistently converted the chances created by the spinners. With the great fielder that he is, The Wall effected 9 dismissals in the 6 matches that he played.
Rahul Dravid finished as India's third highest run-getter in the series, which included a half century in a low scoring thriller.
Rahul Dravid in Natwest Series:-
Matches:6 Runs:245 Average:49 50s:3 Best:82
Catches:6 Stumpings: 3