Cricket Career of Syed Kirmani
This right-hand batsman and right-arm off break bowler, Kirmani featured for the first time against New Zealand. In his very second Test, he reached the world record of six captives, in an innings. He thus accomplished his task of a sound wicket-keeper, since, the beginning.
However, in the unfortunate series in West Indies, his miscalculations behind the stumps could not victimise the valiant Vivian Richards, who ended up with hundreds in three successive Tests, thereby bulldozing India miserably.
Nevertheless, the talented player was soon in form. In the New Zealand tour of India the following year, he climbed the high pedestals of perfection, with a marvellous batting average of 65.33.
With 305 runs in the tour of Australia, he came out in flying colours. His performance as a wicket-keeper was declining against Pakistan and West Indies squads in 1978-79.
He was replaced by Bharath Reddy, in the 1979 Cricket World Cup and the tour of England. He was beckoned back in the team for the series against Australia in 1979-80. His night watchman duty in Bombay, resulted in 101* after his retentive innings of five hours. He grabbed 17 catches and two stumping against Pakistan in the same season. His accomplishments set him at par with Naren Tamhane's feat in a single series. In the three consecutive Tests against England in 1981-82, he did not grant a single bye. Kirmani was bestowed upon with the award for the best wicket-keeper in the 1983Cricket World Cup. His crowning glory was the marvellous catch of Faoud Bacchus that he seized in the historical final against the rival West Indies. In the first round match against Zimbabwe, he ended up in an outstanding feat of three catches and two stumping. At home, he crushed the West Indies' backbone, by a vigorous collaboration of 143, with Sunil Gavaskar, while Gavaskar's personal score was 236*. The following year in Mumbai, the next year, he arrived at his second hundred in Tests, obtaining 102. He gave a partnership of 235 with Ravi Shastri, till date an Indian record, derived for the seventh wicket.
However, in the same series of the Madras Test, he missed a few important catches, precipitating to India's loss in the game. He was dropped with the termination of that series, to welcome Sadanand Viswanath .
Kirmani, nevertheless, was re-recognized in terms of his significance, in the Australian tour of 1985-86. This time he displayed his mettle. His magnificent dismissal of the batting hero, Allan Border, in a World Series Cup match, increased his fame. Unfortunately, he got injured, in his leg, severely. He had to take leave for this suffering, which, signified, the closing down of his international career.
Young, energetic keepers like, Kiran Moreand Chandrakant Pandit, were called to fill up the blank.
Much later, Kirmani joined the domestic cricket for the Railways, and ultimately he resumed to playing cricket for Karnataka.
Kirmani, showed his flair for acting, by casting himself as an anti-social character, in the movie Kabhi Ajnabhi The. Two other cricketers joined him in this project, one of them, being, Sandip Patil.
Kirmani, also entered the selection committee for Indian cricket, as its honourable Chairman, in the early 2000s.
Thus, a man of many praiseworthy attributes, Syed Kirmani, has always, tried to observe his responsibilities, with utmost dedication.
Batting and Fielding Averages
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