As the nation celebrates 10 years of India’s 2011 World Cup win, former cricketer and BJP MP Gautam Gambhir on Friday (April 2) said that the tournament was won by a collective effort by the team and its support staff.
During the 2011 World Cup final between India and Sri Lanka, then skipper MS Dhoni had smashed a six to allow the Men in Blue to lift their second ODI World Cup.
Cricket fans across the nation cherish this as an everlasting memory. However, Gambhir, who was the top-scorer for India in the final with 97, said that he can’t understand the obsession around Dhoni’s finishing six as the tournament was won by the efforts of the entire team and dedicated support staff.
“Do you think that only one individual won us the World Cup? If one individual could have won the World Cup, then India could have won all the World Cups till now. Unfortunately, in India, it’s only about worshipping certain individuals. I’ve never believed in that. In a team sport, individuals have no place. It’s all about contributions,” Gambhir was quoted as saying by the Times of India.
“I’ve never believed in that. In a team sport, individuals have no place. It’s all about contributions. Can you forget Zaheer Khan’s contribution? His first spell in the final, where he bowled three successive maidens? Can you forget what Yuvraj Singh did against Australia? Or for that matter, Sachin Tendulkar’s hundred against South Africa?
“Why do we keep remembering about one six? If one six can win you the World Cup, then I think Yuvraj Singh should have won six World Cups for India, because he hit six sixes in an over (against England in 2007 World T20 at Durban).
“No one talks about Yuvraj. He was the ‘Man of the Tournament’ in 2007 and the 2011 World Cups. And we keep talking about that one six,” Gambhir added.
Also, in an exclusive interview with IANS, the former Indian batsman said that not only Dhoni’s six but one billion people in India won the World Cup for the country.
“For me, 20 people sitting in the dressing room won the World Cup for the country. In fact, one billion people won the World Cup for the country. Not that particular six (by Dhoni),” Gambhir said.
India vs Sri Lanka 2011 WC Final
In the finals, Sri Lanka won the toss and opted to bat first.
Mahela Jayawardene top-scored for Sri Lanka as he struck a century to take the team’s score to 274/6.
India in their chase got off to a bad start as the side lost Sachin Tendulkar and Virender Sehwag with just 31 runs on the board.
But Gambhir and MS Dhoni stepped up and stitched a match-winning 109-run partnership. Gambhir perished after playing a knock of 97 runs, but in the end, Dhoni and Yuvraj took the team over the line by six wickets.
India won its first World Cup in 1983 and then had to wait for 28 years to again lift the title.