Wolverhampton's Danny Batth becomes first Indian origin footballer to captain a club to the Premier League
Due to different complications, this defender's wish to play for India remains unfulfilled. Now, however, he has gone on to create history.
Wolverhampton Wanderers secured their return to the Premier League last night after a six-year absence when third-placed Fulham could only manage a draw against Brentford. As a result, Fulham were left 10 points behind Wolves with only three games to play, making it impossible for the Londoners to catch up to the current league leaders.
Wolves were the favourites to climb up the Premier League ladder, going into the season after a stunning transfer window saw them recruit players of high quality from under the noses of some top clubs.
Midfielder Ruben Neves, brought in from Porto, has been a revelation in the middle of the park for Wolves, all through the season. Up top, a combination of Diogo Jota and Leo Bonatini ensured that the goals kept coming, as the duo scored a combined 27 league goals.
Captain Danny Batth was as instrumental as always. Though his time on the pitch was considerably reduced, he was a big voice in the dressing room, assuming a similar kind of role to John Terry's in Chelsea's 2016-17 title-winning season.
All thanks to Wolverhampton's promotion on Saturday night, Danny Batth achieved a milestone for himself and football fans in the subcontinent. He became the first footballer of an Indian origin to captain a side to the Premier League.
Daniel Tanveer Batth was born to an Indian father, who had migrated to the U.K. from Punjab before he was born. Batth developed a liking to football early on and was enrolled into the Wolverhampton Wanderers Academy. He signed a professional contract with the club during the 2008-09 season and has stayed with them ever since, captaining both the youth and the senior side.
Such is Batth's connection to India that in 2017 that he declared his desire to play for the country on an international level, after his visit to Mumbai in the same year. However, he was unable to do so because of passport regulations and residency restrictions.
Batth has set a milestone which might not seem all that important to the rest of the world but surely means a lot to Indian football fans. What remains to be seen is if he retains his captaincy for the next Premier League season and joins a select group of players of Indian origin to play in the league.