Roger Binny: First Anglo-Indian to play Tests for India: With an appearance in 41 Test innings, aggregating 830 runs at an average of 23.05, with 5 half-centuries, capturing 47 wickets from 38 Test innings, with 6/56 and 8/101 being the best bowling performance in an innings and a match respectively, Roger Michael Humphrey Binny was the first Anglo Indian to play in Tests matches for India.
Binny’s best batting performance came in the first innings of the first Test played against Pakistan in the 1983 series at Karnataka State Cricket Association Stadium, Bangalore.
Electing to bat, India, under the captaincy of Kapil Dev. were 81 runs for the loss of 5 wickets, when Binny walked in to join Sunil Gavaskar. Four runs later Gavaskar departed after scoring 42 runs in a stay of 169 minutes at the crease.
Thereafter Binny and Madan Lal, who had replaced Gavaskar in the middle, got together to produce the second-best partnership (of the match) of 155 runs for the seventh wicket.
This partnership helped India to reach 240 runs for the loss of 7 wickets. Madan Lal departed at his personal score of a well made 74 runs.
Staying at the wicket for 355 minutes, facing 233 deliveries, Binny, with the help of 8 fours, notched up an unbeaten 83* runs.
This cameo innings of Binny and his partnership with Madan Lal helped India put up 275 runs in their first innings.
However, the match ended in a draw since seven hours of play was lost due to rain. It is in this match that Gavaskar registered his 28th Test century when he scored an unbeaten 103* in the unfinished second innings.
Binny’s also has won games for India with his bowling prowess. The second Test against England in the 1986 series, played at Headingley, Leeds, saw Roger pick up the wickets of Alan Lamb (10), Mike Gatting (13), Derek Pringle (8), John Emburey (0) and Bruce French (8). In the process he gave away 40 runs in his spell of 13 overs.
He continued his good efforts in the second innings also accounting for Wilf Slack (19) and Alan Lamb (10).
His match analysis of 21-2-58-7 helped India win the match by 279 runs.
Binny’s best bowling performance in an innings came in the first innings of the second Test against Pakistan in the 1987 series played at Eden Gardens, Kolkata (then Calcutta), when after contributing a solid unbeaten 52* runs with bat, he went on to pick up the wickets of Javed Miandad (17), Saleem Malik (0), skipper Imran Khan (1), Wasim Akram (1), Abdul Qadir (2) and Tauseef Ahmed (0).
Bowling 21.5 overs, giving away 56 runs he took 6 wickets. Picking up another 2 more wickets in the second innings, Binny ended the match with the analysis of 46.1-12-101-8.
For his overall performance with the bat and the ball, Binny was adjudged the Player of the Match.
Roger was effective in the limited version of the game also. He had featured in 49 innings, scored 629 runs, averaged 16.12, with 57 as his best.
He picked up 47 wickets from 38 innings with 4/29 being his best performance.
Binny’s remarkable ODI performances were witnessed in the World Cup 1983 tournament, when he topped the wicket-takers list with a tally of 18 wickets from 8 games.
His best bowling performance came in the round robin league match against Australia on 20th June 1983, played at County Ground, Chelmsford, when he went on to claim 4 wickets, giving away 29 runs in his spell of 8 overs.
India won the match by 118 runs. This win helped India enter the semi final stage.
Binny was awarded the Player of the Match.
He carried his good form into the Benson & Hedges World Championship of Cricket played in Australia in 1985, where he finished second in the list of wicket-takers, picking up 9 wickets from 5 games, with 4/35 being the best performance.
The game against Pakistan in the league stage played on 20th February, 1985, which India, led by Gavaskar, won by 6 wickets, saw Binny pick up the wickets of Mohsin Khan (3), skipper Javed Miandad (17), Rashid Khan (17) and wicket-keeper Anil Dalpat (9) in his spell of 8.2 overs, giving away 35 runs.
Binny’s bowling efforts restricted Pakistan, who chose to bat, to 183 runs in 49.2 overs. With a brilliant batting effort from Azharuddin, who remained unbeaten on 93* and Sunil Gavaskar (54), India won the match by 6 wickets with 25 balls to spare.
An interesting coincidence in Binny’s career is that he made his Test debut against Pakistan in 1979 and played his 27th and final Test also against Pakistan in 1987. Both the games were played at Bengaluru.
In the ODI format, he made his debut against Australia on 6th December, 1980 and played his 72nd and final match also against Australia on 9th October, 1987.
Post retirement, Binny donned the hat of Coach for the U19 Team with the likes of Mohammad Kaif, Yuvraj Singh etc and guided them to win the World Cup 2000.
In 2012 Binny was appointed to the BCCI Selection Committee.