Home Feature When Kapil’s Devils Conquered The World By Winning The 1983 World Cup

When Kapil’s Devils Conquered The World By Winning The 1983 World Cup

When Kapil’s Devils Conquered The World By Winning The 1983 World Cup

Indian Cricket today is currently unquestionably the powerhouse of world cricket. The sole reason why Indian cricket is so dominant today is because of Kapil Dev and his partners. 25th June 1983 was the greatest day in the history of cricket in the country. India defeated the formidable West Indies side at the home of cricket, Lord’s and won the World Cup. A day which is forever etched in history as from there on in cricket in India took giant strides.

India had already stunned hosts England in the semis when they comprehensively defeated them by 6 wickets. Everyone knew Clive Llyod and his men will be the second finalist who had already won back to back World Cup titles. When the final was set nobody gave India any chance and the general opinion was that West Indies will complete a hattrick of trophies.

1983 World Cup win changed the landscape of Indian cricket

Just a few weeks ago India had handed West Indies their first-ever loss in World Cup history. At Old Trafford, the Indian team played out of their skin and shocked everyone beating the defending champions. Before the final everyone knew that this loss would act as a motivation for the men from the Caribbean and they will look forward to taking their revenge from Kapil Dev and his side.

Kapil Dev with the World Cup

On the day of the final, the Indian skipper Kapil Dev saw the pitch in the morning for the final at Lord’s. He was immediately surprised by the amount of grass that was left by the curators on the pitch. West Indies had Holding, Marshall, Garner and Roberts as fast bowlers in their side. Kapil knew that the pitch will aid the seam bowlers throughout the match and as a result, he went in with an out and out pace attack.

West Indies team won the toss and opted to field first. It was a moment of truth as the Indian openers Sunil Gavaskar and Kris Srikkanth took their guards in the middle. India lost Gavaskar early as Roberts removed him for just two runs. In came the man of the match in the semifinal, Mohinder Amarnath and joined Srikkanth. The two batted well as the two complimented each other. Srikkanth was the aggressor whereas Amarnath gave him the strike to keep the scoreboard ticking. Srikkanth was the highest scorer for India in the final chipping in with 38 runs.

Amarnath scored 26 valuable runs as India kept losing wickets at regular intervals. India suffered a huge blow when they lost their skipper Kapil Dev for just 15 runs as a total of 200 looked beyond reach. India could only manage 183 runs, and it looked as if their dreams were almost over.

1983 World Cup
The moment when India won the 1983 world cup.

West Indies had a batting line-up that was intimidating and destructive. Indian pacers knew that pitch is helpful and they need to make early inroads. Madan Lal and Sandhu answered the call as in no time West Indies lost their star openers, Greenidge and Haynes. In walked Viv Richards with his usual swagger ready to win yet another World Cup. He made his intentions very clear from the first ball as he dominated the Indian bowlers.

Richards was batting at a strike rate of over 100 and Kapil sensed that they need to get him out early. What followed was something that no Indian will ever forget. Richards once again went for his trademark hook shot but for once it mistimed as Kapil Dev ran after the ball to take the catch. The Indian skipper sprinted and took a fine catch that would turn the final on its head. Richards went back to the pavilion and Indian from there on, bossed the final.

Kapil Dev after completing the famous catch of Viv Richards in the final.

Amarnath removed both Marshall and Dujon who were stitching together an important partnership for their side. Once Micheal Holding finally got out, the unthinkable took place as Kapil and his devils conquered the world. 83 turned out to be a magical number in the end as India defended their total of 183 runs.

Kapil Dev lifting the World Cup title at the Lord’s balcony; a sight that no Indian will ever get tired of watching. It has been 37 years since India won its maiden World Cup. It completely changed the landscape of cricket in the country. The win made everyone believe that the Indian team is not only good enough to play at the world stage but can also win against any opposition.

1983 World Cup
The crowd at Lord’s after India won the world cup.

Today we have the IPL, T20 World Cup Trophy, 2011 World Cup, 2013 Champions trophy, but it wouldn’t have been possible if 37 years ago Indian team hadn’t defied all odds and claimed the Prudential Cup. The day marked the beginning of a new era in Indian cricket as it immortalised Kapil Dev & Co forever in history.

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