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The First Captain Of India To Win A World Cup

Kapil Dev - The first captain of india to win a world cup

India and its cricket fans are currently experiencing a wave of euphoria. The team is number 1 in the world and is about to dominate the world. Off the pitch, the average Indian enjoys the glory of Film 83, a biopic of India's historic 1983 World Cup victory. January 6 has been marked as a red letter day in Indian sports history. It is the birth of the captain who helped put Indian cricket on the world map. Despite all his contributions, Kapil Dev will forever be remembered as one of the greatest athletes in the history of the country.

His arrival came at a time when Indian cricket was torn between the Mumbai and Delhi cricket circles. It was Sunil Gavaskar against Bishan Singh Bedi. The majority of cricketers came from the elite circles of Bombay and Delhi. Both sides dominated the Ranji Trophy. There was a negligible presence of players from the south, mainly from Karnataka and Tamil Nadu. But Kapil Dev came from a place not present in the sport.

Chandigarh was a far cry from the grandeur of Delhi and Mumbai in the 1970s. A player coming from Rohtak to break into the Indian cricket team would have been impossible in the 1970s. But Kapil Dev emerged and changed the face of Indian cricket forever.

Kapil Dev - bad start at the 1983 World Cup

Kapil Dev played for Haryana and was already making a name for himself in cricket circles. When he was selected for the 1978 tour of Pakistan, he was a fast bowler who had pace. Occasionally he would hit with his zipper and pinch the helmet of Pakistani batsmen. There was a fast bowler who changed the pace of bowling in India.

The first signs of Kapil Dev's genius came during the 1981 tour of Australia. He fell due to a groin injury. India was already 1-0 behind the Melbourne Test and had to defend 143. Kapil Dev knew he had to do his part. Kapil Dev took painkilling injections and pronounced an eternity to take five wickets and help India win in Melbourne. It was this performance that impressed Indian cricket fans. Kapil was destined for greatness.

At the 1983 World Cup, India started badly, losing to Australia and the West Indies in their opening matches. India was 17/5 against Zimbabwe when Kapil Dev changed the whole game. He shot 175, including six sixes. India reached 266/8. There are no images of this game. But in the movie 83, there is a glimpse of the power of Kapil Dev. Played by Bollywood actor Ranveer Singh, you can imagine the power and awe he inspired. If anyone missed the footage from that game, Movie 83 offers a glimpse of that knock, albeit in a heavily dramatized way.

Kapil Dev – 1983 World Champion

That blow to Zimbabwe was the boost Indian cricket needed for its resurgence. They defeated the West Indies and Australia to enter the knockout stage. Before their 1983 World Cup win, India had beaten West Indies only once in ODIs and that was at Berbice before the Tour. Wins over Australia and the West Indies cemented their profile after winning just one game in two World Cups, and another against East Africa.

Kapil led Dev from the front with every step. When India defeated England in the semi-finals, they were on the brink of glory. Kapil Dev had a pivotal moment in the final at Lord's against the two-time champion. India was cast for 183 and they had to roll exceptionally well. Sir Viv Richards, the biggest hitter at the time, was on fire when he blew up 31 in no time. Then came the moment when the game changed.

Richards was able to top a pull shot from Madan Lal. Kapil Dev ran back from square leg, keeping his eye on the ball and making a brilliant catch. History has to be made. Mohinder Amarnath took 3/12 as India took a historic 43-point win. The battle for India's position in cricket was won thanks to Kapil Dev and his men. It was the moment that changed the world of cricket forever. The 1983 World Cup victory made India an economic superpower in sports. The nations now began to take India seriously.

Looking back at the 1983 World Cup victory:

After beating England by 6 wickets in the semi-final, India reached the final against the West Indies. The team captain was Kapil Dev. Sunil Gavaskar, Mohinder Amarnath, Balwinder Sandhu, Madan Lal, and Krishnamachari Srikkanth were the other key players in the Indian team.

The West Indies were looking for the title to take a third consecutive World Cup win in the final.

They won the World Cup in 1975 and 1979 on the same field at Lord's England. They had defeated Pakistan by 8 wickets in the semi-final and played their third final against India. The West Indian team was led by Clive Lloyd. Gordon Greenidge, Viv Richards, Joel Garner, and Andy Roberts were other key figures.

In the 1983 World Cup Final, the West Indies won the draw and invited India to bat first. Indian players were all out with 183 runs in 54.4 overs. However, the West Indies team gave it their all, scoring only 140 runs in the match.

Hence, India won the Cricket World Cup in 1983 and made history!

1983 World Cup Final : Match Schedule


IND vs WI, Final, Prudential World Cup, 1983


Saturday, June 25, 1983


West Indies won the toss and opted to bowl


5:30 AM (Jun 25)


Lord’s, London

Stadium Capacity:



Barrie Meyer, Dickie Bird

India Squad

​Sunil Gavaskar, Kris Srikkanth, Mohinder Amarnath, Yashpal Sharma, Sandeep Patil, Kapil Dev (c), Kirti Azad, Roger Binny, Madan Lal, Syed Kirmani (wk), Balwinder Sandhu

West Indies Squad

Gordon Greenidge, Desmond Haynes, Sir Viv Richards, Clive Lloyd (c), Larry Gomes, Faoud Bacchus, Jeff Dujon (wk), Malcolm Marshall, Andy Roberts, Joel Garner, Michael Holding

1983 World Cup Final: Indian Team List

​Sunil Gavaskar


Kris Srikkanth


Yashpal Sharma


Syed Kirmani

​Wicket Keepers

Mohinder Amarnath

All Rounder

Kapil Dev (c)

Captain (Bowler)

Sandeep Patil


Kirti Azad


Roger Binny


​Madan Lal


​Balwinder Sandhu


1983 World Cup Final Match Details

His batting and bowling efforts earned Mohinder Amarnath Man of the Match credits. He had scored 26 runs, the third highest total in the final, and took 3 vital wickets with his outstanding bowling performance.

Krishnamachari Srikkanth and Mohinder Amarnath took the highest score for the team, with 38 and 26 runs respectively. Sandeep Patil, a bowler, had another best for the team with 27 carries.

In bowling, Madan Lal and Mohinder Amarnath won 3 wickets each. Kapil Dev as the main bowler and captain of the team had kept the West Indian players under pressure.

The West Indies had an easy target to aim for but lost an early wicket to Gordon Greenidge. The team hit over 50 percussions with Desmond Hayes and Viv Richards, but Madan Lal knocked them both out. West Indies went on for 66 runs for the loss of 5 wickets. Jeff Dujon and Malcolm Marshall teamed up for 43 runs but were eliminated from the team, scoring 124 runs. With 140 the team was all-in!

1983 World Cup Final: Captain

India reached the final and won the title under the great leadership of Captain Kapil Dev. He was the lead bowler on the team. In the deciding game against the West Indies, he batted but managed to score only 15 runs while facing 8 bowls. However, he broke three limits in the match.

Kapil Dev had performed well with his fast medium bowls. He threw 11 overs and gave up 21 runs. He had managed to keep the pressure on the opposing team through his great bowling skills. Kapil had taken a critical wicket from Andy Roberts.

About Kapil Dev

When a prolific batsman comes out of India's manufacturing center, it's not particularly surprising. India wouldn't bat an eyelid if the successor to a Tendulkar or a Kohli showed up tomorrow. Tell them though that Test Cricket's highest wicket taker ever was one of them and they'll give you a blank, incredulous look. Osr maybe fool you. Kapil developer Ramlal Nikhanj, arguably India's best fast bowler and certainly India's best all-rounder, will always be remembered for leading the country to the title that made Indian cricket the phenomenon of today: the triumph of the World Cup 1983. When Kapil Dev took the cup of champions, several young cricketers, including a frizzy-haired Mumbaikar, watched in awe.

Kapil Dev was known for his energetic sweeping run-up and deadly outswingers resulting from this open-chested action. With the bat, he was an aggressive lower-middle-class batter who could cause a bat carnage in an era before helmets, monster bats, or T20s. On the pitch, he was known for his inspiring leadership and athleticism. Perhaps the strongest and most disciplined man in the Indian locker room at the time, Kapil is still known for Sir Vivian Richards' backward catch. Also, Kapil Dev has never missed a friendly match due to fitness issues. It would be fair to say his value to the team was beyond the numbers, but even the statistics bend for him: he remains the only man in the history of the game to have won 400 wickets and over 5000 runs in Test Cricket scored - making him one of the greatest all-rounders of all time.

Kapil made his debut in 1978 and gradually began to deliver substantial performances, most notably in Test cricket. In his early years, he seemed like raw talent, focused on just "ripping your shoulder off" and "tearing the leather off the ball" with every ball if he had the racket. With that approach, he scored India's fastest Test in half a century (33-ball) against Pakistan in his third match. He came of age in the home series against Pakistan in 1979-80 were his all round performances (32 wickets and 278 runs) helped India to win 2 Tests.

In the series, he became the youngest player to reach 100 wickets and 1000 runs in Test cricket. Over the next two seasons, consistent performance with the ball and helpful contributions with the racket made him a certainty on the team and a viable candidate for the captaincy. Perhaps due to the burgeoning stages of the format or his priorities stacked in favor of Test cricket, his ODI performance didn't quite match his antics in Test cricket.

And then it happened. Kapil Dev replaced Sunil Gavaskar in the 1982/83 season and became captain of the 1983 World Cup in England. He played one of the best ODI innings ever in a game to be won against Zimbabwe at Tunbridge Wells, where India faltered 17-5. With no official televised coverage of the match due to a BBC attack, Kapil strode and grabbed next to Zimbabwe bowling to hammer 175* from 138 balls - a lesson in cricket counter-attacks and a lesson decades ahead of its time. The incredible knock gave India the momentum it needed to win the coveted Ship of Victory for the first time, beating the West Indies in the competition stage, the hosts in the semi-finals, and finally the Mighty West Indies again in a bad finale on from the Lord.

In the hangover of the World Cup triumph, a dip in Kapil's batting form meant Gavaskar would briefly return to the captaincy. However, he regained his leadership role and led India to its home world title in 1987. India reached the semi-finals but unexpectedly lost to England. In addition, in a league game against Australia, Kapil Dev agreed with the umpires to increase Australia's total from 268 to 270 as a limit was erroneously marked by the scorers as 4 instead of 6 - India lost the match by 1 point, and Kapil regretted his generosity. Kapil Dev accepted responsibility for the semi-final defeat and was never again India's captain, although he remained India's first-choice pacer until he retired as the top wicket-taker in Test cricket in 1994.

After his retirement, Kapil Dev briefly became the India coach. A 3-0 defeat to Australia, a 2-0 defeat to South Africa, and allegations of match fixing left him in tears when he announced he would be leaving the game for good. However, he was acquitted of all charges and won the Wisden Indian Cricketer of the Century award ahead of Sunil Gavaskar and Sachin Tendulkar. He joined the National Cricket Academy in 2004 but was removed from the presidency after joining the rebel Indian Cricket League (ICL) in 2007. He remains a popular critic and commentator to this day.

Kapil Dev And His Records

The 1983 World Cup victory ensured that India was now the ultimate force in cricket. They won the Benson and Hedges Cricket World Cup in Australia. They repeated their victory in England in 1971 by winning both the ODI and Test series in 1986. At the time, Kapil Dev's share rose as the world's greatest all-rounder.

The 80s were the time when the all-rounders dominated. Sir Ian Botham, Sir Richard Hadlee, and Imran Khan along with Kapil. These four competitors ensured that world cricket was enriched. Kapil Dev's aggressive punching set the bar high. No one will ever forget the 1990 Lord's Test, where he blew off Eddie Hemming's four sixes to avoid the series.

In 1994 he became the leading wicket taker in Tests when he surpassed Sir Richard Hadlee's mark of 431 wickets. Before 1994, he achieved even greater fame at home when he helped Bundesliga side Haryana defeat the champions, Bombay, in 1991 at their stronghold Wankhede Stadium. Kapil Dev's captaincy helped Haryana beat Mumbai by two runs in the closest Ranji Trophy final ever. Remarkably, this was the only Ranji final that Sachin Tendulkar lost in his entire 25-year career.

For all his contributions to world and Indian cricket; Kapil Dev will forever be remembered as a legend. As he turns 63, his fame and glory remain intact. 83 The film is a small tribute to the great genius of Kapil Dev.

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