August 31, 1969, Mysore, Karnataka
Right hand Bat
Right arm Fast medium
Arguably the nation's fastest-ever bowler, Javagal Srinath heralded a period of awakening for Indian pace bowling, after Kapil Dev's swing had fired popular imagination. And when he retired from international cricket of 11 years in 2003, Srinath was second only to Kapil in number of Test wickets by an Indian paceman.
On his day, Srinath was outstanding. With a strong shoulder action, he hit the pitch with force, and bowled mainly incutters and inswingers, though in the right conditions he could move it the other way. As much as the slips, Srinath brought into play the man at short leg. On the dustbowls of India, he learned to harness the power of the old ball off the seam rather than in the air, the finest demonstration of which was his 6 for 21 at Ahmedabad in 1996-97 to bowl out South Africa in the fourth innings.
Late in his career - perhaps later than should have been - Srinath added variations to his bowling, in particular using the leg-cutter and the slower delivery to good effect in one-day cricket. In these final years, he played big brother to India's rising seamers, and himself excelled in India's World Cup campaign, Srinath's last international outing. As a batsman, he provided chaotic entertainment, but only occasionally fulfilled his potential.
Srinath's weak points were his stamina and his fragility under pressure. He often gave the impression that he could have done more, but by the time he was finished he had, in many ways, done enough. (Rahul Bhattacharya)
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