Cricket ground in Leicester to be named after Sunil Gavaskar
A cricket ground in England's Leicester will be named after India legend Sunil Gavaskar on Saturday. Gavaskar, one of the greatest batters in Test cricket, is set to become the first cricketer from India to have a ground named after him in England. Notably, Gavaskar was the first-ever player to have touched the 10,000-run mark in the longest format. Here are further details.
It is understood that Gavaskar will unveil his name plaque at the venue in Leicester, which belongs to Bharat Sports and Cricket Club. "I am honored that a ground in Leicester is being named after me. Leicester is a city with possibly the strongest supporters of the game, especially Indian cricket, and it is a huge honor indeed," Gavaskar told The Times of India.
As per TOI, the Bharat Sports and Cricket Club ground in Leicester already has a colossus image of Gavaskar painted on one of the pavilion walls. Keith Vaz, the UK's longest serving MP, having represented Leicester in the parliament for 32 years, took the initiative of naming the ground after Gavaskar. Vaz is now the head of a diaspora organization named Integration Foundation.
Gavaskar, also known as the Little Master, is one of the greatest openers of all time. He led India's batting attack in an era when fast bowlers were on the rise. His valiant knocks against the ferocious Caribbean fast bowlers were deemed indispensable. He represented India from 1971 to 1987 across formats and also led the country sporadically.
Gavaskar was the first-ever player in the Test history to have reached the 10,000-run mark. He achieved the feat in the 1987 Ahmedabad Test against arch-rivals Pakistan. Gavaskar scored a 170-ball 63 in the match, which was later drawn. Till date, he is India's third highest run-scorer in Test cricket with Sachin Tendulkar (15,921) and Rahul Dravid (13,288) occupying the top two spots.
Gavaskar slammed a total of 34 centuries in Test cricket, a record that stood for nearly two decades. His successor Tendulkar finally surpassed him after scoring his 35th Test ton in a match against Sri Lanka (December 2005).