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Full name Ashok Omprakash Malhotra
Born January 26, 1957, Amritsar, Punjab
Current age 58 years 61 days
Major teams India, Bengal, Haryana
Batting style Right-hand bat
Bowling style Right-arm medium
|Test debut||India v England at Chennai, Jan 13-18, 1982 scorecard|
|Last Test||India v England at Kanpur, Jan 31-Feb 5, 1985 scorecard|
|ODI debut||India v England at Cuttack, Jan 27, 1982 scorecard|
|Last ODI||Australia v India at Sydney, Feb 5, 1986 scorecard|
|First-class span||1973/74 - 1994/95|
|List A span||1976/77 - 1994/95|
An attractive right-hand middle-order batsman cast in the GR Viswanath mould, the stockily built Ashok Malhotra never really did justice to his talent in Test cricket and his overall figures are disappointing. Picked to play for the country on the basis of some excellent performances in domestic matches, Malhotra did nothing of note in his first few Tests and was discarded. He toured West Indies in 1983 without making the Test team. Back in the squad against West Indies at home in 1983-84, Malhotra fared better with scores of 32, 72*, 20 and 30 (top score in a total of 90). He was then dropped again before returning to play in one Test against England in 1984-85. He was a member of the Indian team that won the World Championship of Cricket in Australia in 1985.
In domestic cricket however Malhotra was a prolific run getter and for a long time he held the record of most runs in the Ranji Trophy - 7274 at 52.49 with 18 hundreds. His highest score was 258 not out for Bengal against Hyderabad in 1989-90. Later he became a Test selector, and went on to coach Bengal.
For 30 minutes, everything else took a backseat, as the world watched in awe and fear, a fired-up Pakistan fast bowler mercilessly bullying an Australian batsman
As a six-year-old, he watched Wasim Akram at the 1992 World Cup and decided that he would be a left-arm fast bowler. As a man, he put on a show very nearly as memorable as Wasim's 23 years before
The SCG might be India's preferred semi-final venue at this World Cup, but persistent rain in the lead-up has left them worried their spinners may not get the help they are widely expected to
This contest brings together a belligerent bunch of brats and braggers from two countries that are so different, yet share rampant egotism and a high opinion of themselves
Over the last few months, he has slowly moved from a flashy finisher, to a more measured risk manager
India's Plan A in this World Cup had worked flawlessly over seven matches. When they came up against the toughest opponents in the World Cup, however, they were left scrambling for a back-up plan
It was Grant Elliott and New Zealand's time in Auckland. Not South Africa's. But the Proteas will leave this tournament wondering when that will ever change. Maybe next time.