New Delhi: Former Indian skipper Sourav Ganguly was on Thursday appointed as the president of Cricket Association of Bengal (CAB) by Mamata Banerjee, as a replacement for the late Jagmohan Dalmiya.
As the Bengal Tiger starts a new innings, here are five things you must know about Dada.
Ganguly made his ODI debut in 1992 against West Indies under the captaincy of Mohammad Azharuddin. It wasn't a great way to start a new career as he was dismissed for just 3 runs. However, Ganguly made a remarkable Test debut in 1996, against England on their home soil at Lord's, where he slammed 131 runs.
Ganguly took over the captaincy in 2000 when match-fixing rocked Indian cricket. Sachin Tendulkar had also stepped down from captaincy to focus on his batting and it was the start of a new era in Indian cricket, as Ganguly, with his aggressive style, changed the attitude of the Indian players on the field against world-class opponents.
Under his captaincy, India reached the final of the 2003 World Cup which was played in South Africa. The final was nothing less than a nightmare for the Indian fans as India were up against Australia and suffered a crushing 125-run defeat. Ganguly's decision to bowl first after winning the toss, is a move which is criticised till date.
In September 2005, Greg Chappell became the coach of the Indian cricket team and in the next couple of years, there were reports of rift between him and Ganguly. While the Australian found Ganguly "physically and mentally" unfit to lead India, the latter wasn't happy with Chappell's style of coaching. Several other members of the Indian team were also unhappy with Chappell. It was one of the toughest phases of Ganguly's career as his form eluded him as a result of which he was dropped from the squad.
During his tenure, Ganguly relentlessly backed cricketers like Virender Sehwag, Harbhajan Singh, Zaheer Khan and Yuvraj Singh, who all went on to become match-winners for India and have frequently credited Ganguly's backing for their success.
While Ganguly gave innumerable memories for the fans to cherish, one that stands out from the rest is him taking his shirt off and celebrating at the Lord's balcony after India registered an incredible win against England to win the 2002 Natwest series.