The Pataudi Trophy in Cricket

M G Singh By M G Singh, 30th Nov 2011 | Follow this author | RSS Feed
Posted in Wikinut>Guides>Sports>Sports

The Pataudi's have contributed greatly to Indian cricket and the MCC and the BCCI have honored the Pataudi family contribution to cricket with the Pataudi trophy.

The Great Father Sob Duo Pataudi and Pataudi Jr

The India England test matches are underway and the trophy being played for is the Pataudi trophy. This trophy dedicated to the living legend of Indian Cricket the Nawab of Pataudi (Jr) is a reminder that the Nawab was one of the greatest Indians to don the India colors. To top it he played with one eye and that had flummoxed the connoisseurs of cricket at that time and even now. How can a man play with one eye? How could this man negotiate the pace of Wes Hall and Charlie Griffith with just one functional eye and no helmet?

The Pataudi’s

The Nawab of Pataudi had royal lineage. He was the son of the Nawab of Pataudi (Sr) who has the rare distinction of playing for England and better still hitting a century on debut (102 against Australia). Pataudi (Sr) also led India during the 1946 Indian tour of England. His son Mansur Ali Khan brought a royal touch to the game and like his father brought to cricket a glory that showed his class with some regal deeds.

Mansur Ali Khan Pataudi was a Nawab in the true sense with the bat and as a fielder earned the nickname of ‘Tiger’. He was a cricketer of a rare breed. He was an Oxford blue and that added to his aura. He brought to the game an élan and dash that matched his performance in everything he did. His manner and mien saw him command unflinching respect from his players. Even now his protégés Bedi, Prasanna and Jaisimha (sadly no more now) swear by the name of Pataudi.

The Trophy

Thus it is tribute and recognition of the Pataudi family’s service to Anglo-Indian cricket, that the Marylebone Cricket Club’s proposal in 2007to donate a trophy to the winner of the India-England series was graciously accepted by the BCCI.

The last test of this 2011 series was played at the Oval and Pataudi presented the trophy to the winner. Sadly that was the last public event attended by Pataudi as he died soon after.

Pataudi in Test Cricket

Pataudi burst on the Indian cricket scene in 1962 against the MCC team led by Ted Dexter. Dexter as is well-known was a hard-hitting batsman and also had the run machine in Ken Barrington. Pataudi made his Test debut at Delhi in the third Test, but fell for 13. But in the next test he hit 64 and 32 and India won. He followed up with a 103 at Madras and again India won. Batting after lunch on the first day Pataudi batting after lunch saw 82 runs posted in the first hour after lunch and the world took notice of this one-eyed Nawab.

Just after this India toured the West Indies and there was disaster all around. Nari Contractor the Indian captain was hit on the head by a delivery from Charlie Griffith and only emergency surgery saved his life. This injury to contractor catapulted the Nawab as Indies captain and he played 3 tests against the West Indies. He faced up to the ferocious pace of Griffith and Wes Hall on hard wickets unflinchingly and without a helmet. He almost got two fifties with scores of 48 and 47 when everybody else was happy to sit in the Pavilion. On return Pataudi was confirmed as captain and led India in 40 test matches. This was the dawn of the new age in Indian cricket. Under Pataudi India for the first time began winning test matches. India beat Australia and the West Indies under him and he also led India on to their lone ever series victory against the New Zealand team in 1967-68.

Pataudi in Australia

The high point of his batting was in Australia during the 1967-68 tour down under. There playing with one eye he faced Mackenzie, Rorke and other Australian placemen with aplomb. He batted like a Nawab and people who watched him play in that series can’t forget when he hoisted McKenzie of the back foot for a six over mid off. Pataudi was the classical stroke player and he always kept the score board moving. Cricket books like Wisden tell us that India were reduced to 14/3 against the West Endies in 1966 in the Bombay test when Tiger stepped in and driving hall and Griffith with ease making the critics wonder how the earlier batsmen failed. Even hall applauded the drives of the Nawab.

The Nickname Tiger

In the field Pataudi was a tiger and his fielding was marked by agility and anticipation. There is no doubt that he can be rated as one of the best fielders ever. Now the clock has turned a full cycle and the MMC has honored the Nawab for his contribution to cricket with the inception of the Pataudi trophy. Hats off to him. Incidentally Pataudi married the Indian film star Sharmila Tagore.. The MCC and the Indian board have rightly honored the name of Pataudi with this trophy


India -Mcc Test Matches, Indian Cricket, Pataudi, Pataudi Trophy, Tiger Pataudi

Meet the author

author avatar M G Singh
A man who spent his early years in Air Force. An avid writer with over 6000 articles and 60 short stories published.Two novels on the anvil for publication.

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author avatar ittech
1st Dec 2011 (#)

nice write up

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author avatar NEERAJ BHATT
1st Dec 2011 (#)

Good focus on Tiger,came to know about him.His agility is remarkable.

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author avatar Ptrikha
11th Sep 2014 (#)

Great to enhance my cricket knowledge through your articles. Pataudis did great service to the Indian cricket.

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