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  5. Sachin, Kapil Dev Notable Absentees At Rahul Dravid's Felicitation Event

Sachin, Kapil Dev Notable Absentees At Rahul Dravid's Felicitation Event

Mumbai, March 28: Cricketing greats Sachin Tendulkar and Kapil Dev were the notable absentees  at the felicitation event for Rahul Dravid here last night attended by a galaxy of former and current India cricketers, BCCI

PTI [ Updated: March 28, 2012 10:10 IST ]
sachin kapil dev notable absentees at rahul dravid s
sachin kapil dev notable absentees at rahul dravid s felicitation event

Mumbai, March 28: Cricketing greats Sachin Tendulkar and Kapil Dev were the notable absentees  at the felicitation event for Rahul Dravid here last night attended by a galaxy of former and current India cricketers, BCCI officials and other dignitaries.


Reports said, Sachin was present in Mumbai till Tuesday morning. He had attended Mukesh Ambani's felicitation for him at Antilla on Monday night, but had to leave for London to attend a pre-scheduled event there.

     

Former captains Sourav Ganguly, Anil Kumble, VVS Laxman and current skipper Mahendra Singh Dhoni were among those who spoke at the function.

Dravid had shared with Sachin Tendulkar  some of the most memorable century partnerships in cricket, but both Sachin and Kapil Dev could not attend due to prior commitments.

Legends of India cricket Sunil Gavaskar, Dilip Vengsarkar, Ajit Wadekar and Bapu Nadkarni were present at the event.

An emotional Dravid recalled some of the memorable moments of his glorious 16-year long career and thanked his former team mates.

      

“Thanks Anil, Sourav, Mahi (Dhoni) and Laxi. I would like to believe that we took a great legacy of the Indian team forward. I have no doubt the present team will even take it to greater heights,” said Dravid.

Dravid has scored over 23,000 international runs and stands second behind Tendulkar in the all-time Test batting chart.

 “I had made a pact with myself that I would not cry at any of the functions organized for me over the last three weeks, but I think today that's been tested to the limit,” said Rahul Dravid, voice choking with emotion during the felicitation ceremony organized for him by BCCI on a warm Tuesday night.  

BCCI President N Srinivasan was indisposed due to ill health but sent a recorded message and called Dravid one of India's most selfless cricketers.

       

”Cricket's given me some of my most unbelievable experiences,” Dravid said, trying hard to stop the tears from rolling down his cheeks.

“I've experienced some unbelievable victories and some crushing defeats. What I've learnt through them is that tough times do pass and we can endure and we can survive. Playing for India humbled me and made me appreciate what I did for so long,” Dravid said amidst rapturous applause.

Calling himself lucky to be at the “right place at the right time”, Dravid went on to salute the backroom boys of Indian cricket.

      

 “I want to thank the groundsmen, scorers, umpires and people who work in honorary positions just to help organize a game of cricket and set the stage for us to perform, because without them these hundreds and these achievements wouldn't have been possible.”

”When I started in 1996, Indian cricketers were treated much like second class citizens. We always toured England in the first half of their summer and were made to play on some of the smaller county grounds. Indian cricketers have changed that but the BCCI has played its role in making us the big boys of international cricket.”

Dravid, who was vice-captain to Sourav Ganguly  for almost five years, also paid his former captain rich tributes.

 “We've been captain and vice-captain for more than five years and the relationship is almost like a husband and wife. We've had out ups and downs, but I think we've both come out of it with flying colours.”

Ganguly, on his part called Dravid as one of greatest No. 3 batsmen overseas that the world has ever produced, but rated his innings of 180 against Australia at the Eden Gardens in 2001 as his best.

MS Dhoni, who made his Test debut under Dravid's captaincy in 2005, said, “Dravid is someone who walked through obstacles and not around them.”

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