12 April 2017: Exactly 100 years ago, was born Vinoo Mankad. He is undoubtedly amongst the greatest all-rounders of the game. People believe that Kapil Dev and Vinoo Mankad are the two greatest all-rounders from India. SAGE joins the many cricket lovers n paying a tribute to this maestro.
“Midwicket Tales: From Trumper to Tendulkar” published by SAGE Publications, has glowing references to his exploits. In the chapter on left arm spinners, the authors Giridhar and Raghunath say, “…Mankad in the period afterr World War II was the best among his contemporaries. And like Rhodes before him, Mankad was a genuinely great all-rounder who also opened the batting. Perhaps the greatest spinning all-rounder the game has ever produced Mankad in our opinion will pip Wilfred Rhodes for the spot. He won India their first test against MCC in 1951 and followed this up with their second test win against Pakistan. He had 10 wicket hauls on both occasions. He remained the quickest to reach the double of 100 wickets and 1,000 runs for a long time and the highest wicket taker for India till the spin quartet overtook him. As an opener, he hit hundreds against Lindwall and Miller (Australia) and Bedser and Trueman (England) in their countries (not on subcontinent pitches). As a spinner he carried a huge workload with marathon spells and was often very economical while retaining his wicket taking ability…..”
Reminiscing about Mankad yesterday, author Raghunath added, “I saw him first in January 1956 against New Zealand at Chennai when he and Roy opened and put on 413 for the first wicket- a world record creating opening stand. Mankad made 231 and I remember the sweeps and drives; I was 9 years old then. Some months later, September 1956 I saw him bowling against Australia; I was still 9 plus. He had a round- arm action and was very accurate; he took out Harvey with a faster ball, bowled him. I last saw him in 1958 taking 4 wickets against Gerry Alexander’s West Indians. He got Sobers caught at slip. He could bowl for long spells tirelessly; he had an armer and a faster one and moved with alacrity to catch of his own bowling, anticipating brilliantly. For his hundreds against Lindwall and Miller in Australia, and against Bedser and Trueman in England, I would rate him the finest spinning all- rounder. An amazing professional who took on the establishment and administrators like D'Mello and Vizzy. He would have been invaluable in modern day limited overs cricket!”
Revisit the lanes of cricketing history with authors S Giridhar and V J Raghunath, throughh their book " Mid-wicket Tales".