Jagmohan Dalmiya Was a Rarity Amongst Administrators, Says Ian Chappell
Former Australia captain Ian Chappell said Jagmohan Dalmiya was an Indian administrator who stood firm at a time when the English and Australian administrators were used to getting their own way.
Recalling one of his many meetings with Jagmohan Dalmiya, former Australian captain Ian Chappell on Monday paid a rich tribute to the late BCCI president, saying he was a "rarity among administrators and that history should judge him kindly". (Dalmiya: The Indian who broke white domination in cricket)
Dalmiya, who died after a cardiac arrest in a city hospital in Kolkata at the age of 75 on Sunday night, was cremated on Monday. Chappell took a walk down memory lane, remembering the heydays of the visionary administrator.
"To me Jaggu was a rarity amongst administrators because he genuinely wanted to listen to the opinions of former players. I felt he also wanted to have former players involved in the real, hard, decision-making process of administration," Chappell was quoted as saying by 'ESPNcricinfo'.
"I think he was an Indian administrator who stood firm at a time when the English and Australian administrators were used to getting their own way. And I think that's why he copped a lot of criticism from those two areas because he wasn't one who just bowed down and rolled over.
"I think if Jaggu had stayed on a bit longer as ICC president, I'm sure today there would be a World Test Championship," the cricketer-turned-analyst opined. (Friends And Foes Come Together in Dalmiya's Final Journey)
Chappell believes that history should judge Dalmiya very kindly.
"I think history should judge Jaggu very kindly. I think he did a hell of a lot for the game. Not just the financial side, he cared about the game. He had some very good ideas. He was also very keen on having ex-players, who were mentors, getting (them as) a group together to promote cricket in many different parts of the world.
"And once Jaggu moved on from the presidency, those ideas just seemed to disappear. I hope that he's remembered for a lot of that work." (Dalmiya Was a Visionary, Says BJP Leader L.K. Advani)
Chappell fondly remembered his first meeting with Dalmiya, when the powerful administrator advised the Australian to take a round of Salt Lake Stadium in a motorcade.
"I'll never forget the first time I met Jaggu. We were in Calcutta in the lead-up to the 1996 World Cup. I was there as an ex-captain, we did a thing inside Salt Lake Stadium and he said we've got a motorcade going back. I asked him if it'll be worth doing it and he said 'Ian, it'll be one of the great experiences of your life'.
"I went on that motorcade and I had never seen so many people in my life. And so many happy people, throwing flower petals, waving, smiling," recalled Chappell. (Dalmiya's Smiling Persona Will be Missed, Says Sunil Gavaskar)