Anil Kumble, the former Indian leg-spinner, had the privilege of leading the national team as well. Though he captained in only 14 Tests and a solitary ODI, he has been regarded highly by his former teammates. Recently, retired speedster RP Singh called him his favourite skipper. And now former batter Gautam Gambhir has heaped praises on Jumbo, as Kumble is popularly known.
Gambhir even went to the extent of saying that he would give his life for Kumble, calling him the best skipper he has played under. Gambhir was touched by Kumble especially after his words of motivation during the Australia tour way back in 2007-08.
Had he led India longer, he would’ve made many records: Gautam Gambhir
“Sehwag and I were having dinner when Kumble walked in and said that you guys will open throughout the series no matter what. Even if you get 8 ducks it doesn’t matter. I have never heard such words from anyone in my career. So, if I have to give my life for someone, it would be Anil Kumble. Those words are still in my heart,” Gambhir was quoted as saying in Sports Tak.
Though India lost the series 1-2, they managed to thump the hosts by 72 runs on a nasty track at the W.A.C.A in Perth. Gambhir, who’s currently a Member of Parliament (BJP) in the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), said that Kumble would’ve smashed a few records had he gotten a longer rope.
“Had he captained India for a longer duration like Sourav Ganguly, MS Dhoni or Virat Kohli, he would have made many records. He captained in tough series’ in Australia and Sri Lanka,” Gambhir stated.
In Test cricket, Kumble ended with 619 wickets from 132 matches with 35 five-wicket hauls. Despite not having the skills to turn the leather, he frustrated the batters with his line and lengths. Gambhir feels that with the Decision Review System in place, Kumble would have gotten around 900 wickets.
“With DRS technology Kumble would have ended up with 900 wickets and Harbhajan (Singh) with 700 wickets. They missed lbw decisions on front-foot. Bhajju pa took 7 wickets in Cape Town, just imagine. If they would have played on rank-turners opposition would not have been able to make even 100 runs,” he added.
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