June 25 1983 - India Wins the Prudential World Cup in England

On June 25th 1983, India won the Prudential World Cup in England after defeating the West Indies.

The 1983 World Cup (also known as the Prudential World Cup) was held from June 9th to June 25th 1983 and was the third edition of the ICC Cricket World Cup. Eight countries participated in this world cup and this was an exciting series of matches right from the start. Non-performing teams at that time, like India and Zimbabwe scored surprising wins over teams like the West Indies and Australia, England and Pakistan.

India and the West Indies qualified for the semi final which came as a surprise since the Indian was considered the underdog back then. When Kapil Dev led India against the West Indies, bookmakers odds on India were 66-1. This was a young team (seven of the players were in their twenties) being led by a twenty-four-year-old, confident captain. 

Back then with the odds clearly in favour of the West Indies, there were only two people who believed that India could win this game: former Australian captain Kim Hughes and Sunder Rajan, former sports editor at The Times of India. The strategy which Kapil Dev applied then was to fill his team with all-rounders; the batsmen get the team the runs and then leave the rest to the bowlers.

From being the dark horses to world champions, India stunned the world by beating the defending champions who had won two world cups consecutively. Almost everyone expected Clive Lloyd to lift the World Cup for the third time in 1983. This belief was only affirmed when Andy Roberts, Malcom Marshall, Michael Holding and Joel Garner took eight wickets between them, ensuring India walked off the field with just 183 runs in 54.4 overs.

India took their critics by surprise when Madan Lal and Amarnath took three wickets each. Vivian Richards was batting on steadily and enthusiastically when Kapil Dev took a splendid catch running backwards. The West Indies lost the match by 43 runs.

Kapil Dev lifted the World Cup trophy over the Lord’s balcony and this remains India’s greatest victory ever. What makes it more special was how a team which was considered a dark horse by many won the game against a team who were till then indisputable world champions. Kapil Dev was the captain who led this team to victory and Mohinder Amarnath was the Man of the Match.

A few key moments of this iconic match, which have been frozen in time and our memories, are Srikkant taking a single and running backwards in absolute delight, Balwinder Sandhu clean bowling Gordon Greenridge, Srikkant again square-diving Andy Roberts for four and Kapil Dev’s unforgettable catch ensuring Vivian Richards walked off the field.  

The 1983 victory ignited such a passion for cricket that many youngsters were inspired to take up cricket professionally, including a ten-year-old Rahul Dravid (who would later go on to captain the Indian team).

India followed their World Cup success by later winning the Asia Cup in Sharjah and the World Championship of Cricket in Australia. India’s victory ensured that one day cricket went from being an ordinary affair to a celebrated game.

Also On This Day:

1529 - Babur reaches his capital Agra after winning Bengal

1658 - Aurangazeb arrests his father Shah Jehan and puts him in Agra Fort jail.

1975 - Then PM Indira Gandhi imposes Emergency in India.

1997 - India and the United States sign a new bilateral treaty for extradition of fugitive offenders.

1999 - Petroleum Sports Control Board (PSCB) emerge both men's and women's champion in inter-institutional table tennis at Gandhidhan.

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