Sourav Ganguly has left an indelible mark when it comes to the history of the Indian cricket team. When he made his Test debut in 1996 at Lord’s against England, Ganguly smashed a century on debut and his 131 signalled the arrival of an individual who was destined for great things. Ganguly took over the captaincy when Indian and world cricket was reeling from the match-fixing scandal and he turned the fortunes of the team brilliantly. He was at the helm when India ended Australia’s 16-match winning streak in Tests in 2001 during the Kolkata Test which was made memorable for VVS Laxman’s 281 and his 376-run stand with Rahul Dravid as India won after being asked to follow-on.
However, Ganguly’s memorable moment came in the final of the 2002 Natwest Trophy against England in Lord’s. Chasing 326, Yuvraj Singh and Mohammad Kaif helped India achieve what was then a record run-chase. Following the victory, Ganguly took off his shirt and vigorously twirled it as India exacted sweet revenge for England, who had earlier won in Mumbai and it witnessed Andrew Flintoff taking his shirt off at the Wankhede and celebrating aggressively.
#dada took our Indian Cricket 🏏 to next level
Got back the team spirit ♥️🏏
Always stood by the team & for the team .#happybirthdaydada the prince of Kolkatta ♥️July 8, 2019
Happy Birthday to a man who brought about a fantastic transition in Indian cricket, a brilliant leader who backed guys he believed in to the fullest . But aise kaun chadhta hai , Dada @SGanguly99 #HappyBirthdayDada pic.twitter.com/tuOwPejGm1— Mohammad Kaif (@MohammadKaif) July 8, 2019
Happy Birthday Dadi! From playing with you in our Under-15 days to now commentating with you. It’s been quite a journey. Have a great year ahead! pic.twitter.com/Ijnder6RJN— Sachin Tendulkar (@sachin_rt) July 8, 2019
Under Ganguly, India managed to change their reputation of being ‘Tigers at Home, Lambs Abroad’ with winning abroad on a consistent basis. They won a Test in England after 16 years and in Australia after 22 years while Ganguly helped India win a Test series in Pakistan for the first-time-ever when India won the final Test in Rawalpindi due to Dravid’s brilliant 270.
During the fag end of his career, Ganguly had a turbulent time during the entire falling out episode with the-then coach Greg Chappell which fractured the Indian dressing room. India was eliminated in the first round of the 2007 World Cup but Ganguly’s own batting form, which had dipped slightly in 2005 and 2006, came back and he contributed in match-winning efforts in South Africa and in the home series against Pakistan and Australia.
🔘 The God of offside
🔘 The Prince of Calcutta
🔘 A Leader par excellence
🔘 A Mentor par brilliance
Here’s wishing @SGanguly99, a very Happy Birthday!July 8, 2019
Rajdeep Sardesai: “Does Greg Chappell owe an apology to Indian cricket? to Tendulkar, to Sourav Ganguly, to Dravid?”July 8, 2019
The rise of Indian cricket team from ashes was because of an aggressive leader who showed the world not to mess with his team thank you Dada 🙏🏼... wish you a very happy birthday @SGanguly99 sir #HappyBirthdayDada pic.twitter.com/mmBWin5cDj— Sai Dharam Tej (@IamSaiDharamTej) July 8, 2019
On the occasion of Ganguly’s birthday, here are some of the memorable tweets from social media. Happy Birthday, Dada. Thank you for making India a cricketing superpower and laying the base for the likes of MS Dhoni and Virat Kohli to take the game to the next level.