Dilip Balwant Vengsarkar Profile
One of the most elegant and successful batsmen to pick up a cricket bat for India, Dilip Vengsarkar had a very prominent 16 year career. Batting at number three, he has scored many a memorable centuries to win his team matches and secure favorable results from unfavorable situations. He started his meteoric rise rather slowly though. He debuted against New Zealand in January 1976 but did not manage to make any real impact. It took him the tour of Australia in 1977-78 to come out of his shell and make a name for himself on the international scene.
In his time, he was one of the most stylish batsmen in the game and was a brilliant 'driver' of the cricket ball. The West Indies were a dominant force in World cricket and World Cups during this time and with towering bowlers like Holding, Marshall and Roberts, it wasn't difficult to understand why. Vengsarkar was one of the only few batsmen who managed to attain success against these bowling greats scoring approximately six centuries against them. His other famous feats include scoring three consecutive centuries at Lord's to help India beat England, which at the time was no easy task and for this was awarded the Man of the Series. Also, he has one of the highest batting averages for Test matches played at home. At the peak of his career he was rated the best batsman in the world.
He was a part of Kapil Dev's 1983 World Cup winning squad and eventually took over as captain after the 1987 World Cup. He started off brilliantly as skipper scoring a couple of centuries in his first series as the man in charge. The captaincy though did no last very long following a miserable tour of the West Indies in 1989 and an altercation with the BCCI.
For all his success, he was awarded the Arjuna award in 1981. In 1987, the Indian government also presented him with the Padma Shri honour apart from also being the Wisden cricketer of the year that same year.
Following his retirement in 1992, he was the highest run and century getter behind Gavaskar at the time. He started cricket academies to develop budding cricketers. He was also made the Chairman of the Talent Resource Development Wing (TRDW) when it was created in 2002. This was founded to develop cricketing talent within the country. In 2003, he became the Vice-President of the Mumbai Cricket Association and later on went on to become the Chairman of selectors for the BCCI.