On the 71st birthday of legendary leg-spinner Bhagwat Chandrasekhar, here are some interesting and lesser known facts about the one of India's famed spin quartet:
Bhagwat Chandrasekhar was born on May 17, 1945 in Mysore.
B S Chandrasekhar was afflicted by poliomyelitis often called polio or infantile paralysis, as a five-year-old. He used his withered right-arm to deadly effect.
Chandrasekhar had said that he emulated Aussie legspinner of the 1950s abd former Test captain Richie Benaud.
Together with Bishen Singh Bedi, EAS Prasanna and Srinivasarahgavan Venkataraghavan, Chandrasekhar formed the formidable Indian spin quartet, which dominated oppositions in the 60s and 70s.
The famous spin quartet of India (From left to right): Bhagwat Chandrasekhar (L), Bishen Singh Bedi (2nd from L), Erapalli Prasanna (third from left) and Srinivas Venkatraghavan (R) pose in Calcutta in May 2003. Pic/AFP
He took 242 wickets in 58 Tests at an average of 29.74, with a strike rate of 65.9 balls per wicket.
In India wins, Chandra was even more deadly. He took 98 wickets in 14 wins at an average of 19.27, with a strike rate of 45.4. Half his 16 five-fors and 2 ten-wicket hauls were captured in those 14 victorious Tests.
Five of the 14 Indian wins were on overseas matches. He took 42 wickets in these five Tests.
In 2002, he bagged Wisden’s “Best Bowling performance of the century” for his 6 for 38 runs against England at the Oval in 1971.
His 6 for 38 at The Oval in 1971 also gave India their first series victory in England and he was instrumental in India's first win in Australia in 1978, taking 12 for 104 at Melbourne.
He also was the Wisden Cricketer of the Year in 1972.
He was honoured by the Indian government by being presented the Arjuna Award and Padmashri -- both in 1972.
Chandrasekhar first played for a cricketing club named 'City Cricketers' in Bangalore.
His first international match was in 1964 against England at Bombay.
His first five-wicket haul came in 1966, two years after his debut, against West Indies.
In his first class career, he took 1063 wickets from 246 matches at an average of 24.03 and economy rate of 2.84 with his best figure being 9/72.
He scored only 167 runs in his 58 Tests and had a batting average of 4.07!
As a batsman, he was truly a number 11. He managed 23 ducks from 80 innings, averaging one duck every four innings.
He was given a special Gray-Nicholls bat during the 1977–78 Australian tour with a hole in it to commemorate the four ducks he scored.
He also holds the dubious distinction of scoring fewer runs (167) off his bat than wickets (242) taken in Test cricket. The only other cricketer with this distinction over a significant Test career is New Zealand fast bowler Chris Martin.
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