RSS FeedFeeds

Laxman Sivaramakrishnan

Last laughs

Beware the leggie scorned

Text size: A | A

© Getty Images

This one is from India's 1982-83 tour of the West Indies. We were in Barbados, on the third leg of the tour, by which time I had gotten friendly with Desmond Haynes and Malcolm Marshall, both local boys. Desmond took it upon himself to take me around the place in the evenings and we had some great times at his house as well.

Dessy took part in the four-day game that I played in for a place in the side for the fourth Test. India batted first. When I went in, there was this legspinner called George Linton on. I tried to hit him out of the ground but ended up getting caught at gully. Dessy broke out into a loud laugh.

Later that evening, he went up to Hanumant Singh and said, "Manager, I want to take the kid out." Hanumant okayed it, and Desmond took me out to an area called Haynesville. He told me the place was named after him but I didn't know whether to believe him or not.

We went into one of the clubs and he introduced me to his friends: "Meet this young man. He's an Indian legspinner, and he can't even play a Barbadian legspinner." They all laughed and laughed and I was quite embarrassed.

The next day Dessy came out to bat and I got him out clean bowled. He was walking back to the pavilion when I ran up to him and needled him, saying, "Let's go back to that club tonight." Dessy's response was something along the lines of, "I don't want to see your face for the rest of the tour." He remained very reserved after that ... till he got a hundred in the Antigua Test, which happened to be my debut. He came over and asked me whether I was ready for a trip back to Barbados.

As told to Rahul Bhattacharya. This article was first published in Wisden Asia Cricket magazine

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Email Feedback Print
Related Links

    'Lara v McGrath was a great battle of our generation'

Dravid and Manjrekar discuss Brian Lara's adaptability

    'Bailey should lead Australia in the World Cup'

Bowl at Boycs: Geoff Boycott on why keepers don't make good captains

    A good time to invest in Smith stock

Mark Nicholas: Australia's new captain has shown more responsibility in his batting without shedding his youthful bravado

    'Why I was dropped is still an unsolved mystery'

Former India opener Madhav Apte talks about his short-lived Test career, and touring the West Indies

Was it right to play the fourth ODI?

Ahmer Naqvi: Why there really is no point in the PCB trying to get international cricket back to Pakistan

News | Features Last 7 days

The perfect Test

After the tragedy of Phillip Hughes' death, this match showed that cricket and life will continue to go on. This time Test cricket dug in and got through to tea.

Kohli attains batting nirvana

Virat Kohli's innings on the final day transcended the conditions, the bowlers and his batting partners, and when it was all in vain, he displayed remarkable grace in defeat

Australia in good hands under proactive Smith

The new stand-in captain has the makings of a long-term leader, given his ability to stay ahead of the game

Karn struggles to stay afloat

The failed gamble of handing Karn Sharma a Test debut despite him having a moderate first-class record means India have to rethink who their spinner will be

BCCI's argument against DRS not 100%

Turning your back on a system that the whole cricketing world wants a discussion on, refusing to discuss it because it is not 100%, is not good enough

News | Features Last 7 days