Want to be a professional cricketer?
On 20 June, 1996, India found two gems in Sourav Ganguly and Rahul Dravid, who both made their Test debut against England at the Mecca of Cricket, Lord’s. Both the batsmen would went on to have great careers for the Indian team and heralded themselves at the top stage. Both of them were the spine of the batting order for the next 15 years and achieved great success.
England’s swing bowler Dominic Cork, who had also made his Test debut against West Indies at the Lord’s in 1995, observed Ganguly and Dravid play some fine shots of his bowling. Ganguly went on to score 131 runs in his maiden innings whereas Dravid scored a fine knock of 95 runs. Cork stated that both the batsmen were superb timers of the ball and he had also played with them before their International debuts.
Sourav Ganguly and Rahul Dravid were the spine of Indian batting
On the other hand, Cork didn’t had the best of the matches as he scalped two wickets for 112 runs. The right-hander could not trouble the scorers in the first dig whereas got only one run in the second dig.
However, Ganguly and Dravid were at their best as they showed signs of what was to come. The pair added 94 runs for the sixth-wicket alliance and it was the beginning of a new era in Indian cricket.
“Both Ganguly and Dravid were seriously talented batsmen and up there with the best that have played the game. Even before the Lord’s game, I had in fact bowled to them when they were part of the India ‘A’ side and I was touring with the England ‘A’ team. Ganguly and Dravid batted wonderfully during the ‘A’ games as well,” Dominic Cork told Sportskeeda.
“Both of them were superb timers of the ball. Dravid, who was later known as the ‘Wall’ was just tight and compact, in the Michael Atherton mould. Ganguly was all flourish and timing as well elegant in the middle,” the 48-year-old added.
Sourav Ganguly scored 20 fours in his knock of 131 runs whereas Dravid found the boundary on six occasions. Both the youngsters showed what they could bring to the table and both of them went on to have great careers for the national side.
Both Ganguly and Dravid were technically strong and their debut against England was a trailer of what was to come in the future years and didn’t it turn out to be blockbuster movie. Ganguly finished with 7212 runs in 113 Test matches he played whereas Dravid amassed 13288 runs in 164 Test matches at an average of 52.31. Indeed it was a happy ending!