Friday, Oct 07, 2022

Yashpal Sharma, Member Of Kapil Dev's Cricket World Cup-winning Team, Dies

Yashpal Sharma, played 37 Tests and 42 ODIs for India. He was 66 when he died and is survived by his wife, two daughters and a son

(From left) Madan Lal, Kirti Azad, Kapil Dev, Yashpal Sharma, Sunil Valson, Sunil Gavaskar members of the India's 1983 World Cup winning team during a get together. Courtesy: Twitter

Yashpal Sharma, 66, member of the India cricket team which won the 1983 Cricket World Cup has died of heart attack in New Delhi on Tuesday. (More Cricket News)

He is survived by his wife, two daughters and a son. According to sources, Yashpal collapsed at home after returning from his morning walk.

Yashpal Sharma, played 37 Test, 42 ODIs and 160 first class matches. He was the second-highest run-getter in Kapil Dev's 1983 Cricket World Cup-winning team. His best moment in the 1983 World Cup  was stroke-filled half century in the semifinal against England.

Known for his gutsy attitude, he made his Test debut against England at Lord’s in 1979, while his last Test match was against West Indies in 1983.

Sharma made his ODI debut against Pakistan in Sialkot in 1978, while his last match was against England in Chandigarh in 1985.

Sharma played 160 first-class matches scoring 8, 933 runs including 21 centuries.

Upon retirement Sharma remained India's national cricket selector from 2003 to 2006. He became national selector again in 2008.

Former India captain Dilip Vengsarkar expressed shock at his teammate's demise. The 1983 squad had met on the sidelines of a book launch here couple of weeks ago.

"It is unbelievable. He was the fittest among all of us. I had asked him that day when we met how about his routine. He was a vegetarian, teetotaller, used to have soup for his dinner and very particular about his morning walks. I am just shocked," Vengsarkar told PTI.

"As a player, he was a proper team man and a fighter. I fondly remember the 1979 Test against Pakistan in Delhi. We both had a partnership which helped us save the game. I knew him since my university days. Still can't believe it," he added.

In Ranji Trophy, where Sharma represented three teams -- Punjab, Haryana and Railways --, Yashpal played 160 matches amassing 8,933 runs which included 21 centuries with a highest score of 201 not out.

 He was an umpire too and stood in a couple of women's ODIs. The multi-faceted former player also served as coach of the Uttar Pradesh Ranji team.

 "He told me that day we met that I had lost weight. We had a great reunion. I remember the very first game in the 1983 World Cup playing the mighty West Indies with those fast bowlers, he set the agenda and we won that game," said former teammate Kirti Azad.

 "He was again fantastic in the semifinal hitting Bob Willis for a six. Nowadays people say (Ravindra) Jadeja hits stumps regularly but so did Yashpal. He was a livewire on the field and would hit stumps all the time," he recalled.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi was among those who condoled his demise.

"Shri Yashpal Sharma Ji was a much beloved member of the Indian cricket team, including the legendary 1983 squad. He was an inspiration for teammates, fans as well as budding cricketers. Anguished by his passing away," Modi tweeted.

(with inputs from Agencies)


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