• Saturday, December 09, 2023

Indian cricket legend Bishan Singh Bedi dies at 77

Bedi claimed 266 wickets in 67 Tests in an illustrious international career between 1967 and 1979

**EDS: FILE PHOTO** New Delhi: In this Friday, Oct. 12, 2012, file photo, former Indian captain and legendary spinner Bishan Singh Bedi at a press conference, in New Delhi. Bedi died on Monday, Oct. 23, 2023, at the age of 77. (PTI Photo/Subhav Shukla)(PTI10_23_2023_000111B)

By: Eastern Eye

Indian cricketing hero and spin great Bishan Singh Bedi has died aged 77, sports minister Anurag Thakur said Monday, calling it a “huge loss” to the sport.

“Former captain of the Indian cricket team, a bowler who was always remembered by the nation, Bishan Singh Bedi, is no more,” Thakur, who is also the former president of the Board of Control for Cricket in India, told reporters.”It’s a deeply sad news and a huge loss for cricket. The whole of cricket world stands with his family in this hour of grief.”Bishan, who was part of the famous spin quartet of Erapalli Prasanna, Srinivas Venkataraghavan and Bhagwath Chandrasekhar, claimed 266 wickets in 67 Tests in an illustrious international career between 1967 and 1979.Indian prime minister Narendra Modi said he was “deeply saddened” by Bedi’s death. 

“His passion for the sport was unwavering and his exemplary bowling performances led India to numerous memorable victories,” he posted on X, formerly Twitter.

“He will continue to inspire future generations of cricketers,” Modi added.

Bedi, a left-arm spinner, also played 10 one-day internationals for India between 1974-79.

Bishan Singh Bedi (in white turban) with Indian prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee in 1999. (Photo: GettyImages)

He was often blunt in his criticism of peers, cricketers, and faltering administrators of the sport.

“Legendary spinner and someone who wasn’t afraid to speak his mind,” former India batsman Virender Sehwag posted on X.

With a big turban and a smiling face, Bedi was a regular at cricket events in New Delhi, but his failing health over the past couple of years kept him away from an active social life.

Bedi is survived by two sons and two daughters, a pair each from his two marriages.

His younger son Angad is married to Neha Dhupia, an actress and model crowned Miss India in 2002.

Former Pakistan captain Intikhab Alam said he was “sad” at his death.

“I had a very cordial and friendly relationship with him, he was a great spinner and human being”, Alam told AFP.

“It’s a great loss for cricket in general and Indo-Pak cricket in particular.” (AFP)

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