At some point in every captain’s career, he must have surely underestimated one player in his team during his playing days. The same thing happened when Sourav Ganguly was the captain of the Indian national cricket team. Yes, the former Indian captain had totally misjudged one Indian player during the Natwest Series 2002 final.
The iconic Natwest Series final between England and India will forever be in every Indian fan’s memory. The likes of Yuvraj Singh and Mohammad Kaif won a billion hearts by putting on a candid show with the bat when the team lost the first half of the batting line-up.
After Team India aced the target of 326, Sourav Ganguly took off his shirt and waved it with aggression, passion from the balcony of the iconic Lord’s Cricket Ground. This is one of the most defining moments of Indian cricket. Everyone thought England would easily pull off a win as the match was played in their home conditions.
Moreover, they set up a big target for the Indians, in what looked like a mission impossible. England posted a massive total on the board with the help of centuries from Marcus Trescothick and Nasser Hussain.
During India’s run-chase, India were struggling at 146/5 in 24 overs having lost Virender Sehwag, Sourav Ganguly, Rahul Dravid and Sachin Tendulkar. The match had so much drama from the first ball till the end because India were in all sorts of trouble when they lost key batsmen. However, Mohammed Kaif and Yuvraj Singh provided a ray of rope.
When Sourav Ganguly underestimated Mohammad Kaif
Despite losing half of the line-up, Yuvraj Singh stitched a valuable 121-run partnership with Mohammed Kaif. The duo took the bowling attack to the cleaners by smashing boundaries in all parts of the ground. At that time, Yuvraj looked in imperious touch with the bat and was playing on 58. Meanwhile, captain Sourav Ganguly sent a message from the Lord’s balcony to Kaif.
Sourav asked Kaif using signals to take a single only to get Yuvraj on strike. Nonetheless, Kaif did not listen to his advice in the first place and took the challenge upon himself to score a mighty six over the leg side, Meanwhile, Sourav Ganguly was really impressed with Kaif’s response. In the end, it was Kaif who steered India to victory with a memorable 87* and earned the title of Natwest final hero.