Whilst enjoying your article above, I notice a glaring omission, regarding Gujarat and it's cricketing legends! Whilst the Gaekwads of Baroda were deservedly mentioned, yet some of the biggest stars were completely forgotten, i.e. Maharajah Ranjitsinhji Jadeja of Jamnagar (Navanagar), and his nephew Duleepsingh Jadeja! I have outlined some interesting facts about Sri Ranjitisinhji, below:
- 'Ranji' not only became the first Indian to play a Test, but he also made his debut special by scoring 62 and 154 not out.
- The Maharajah went on to become the king of county cricket, when he exceeded 1000 runs in 10 successive seasons from 1895 onwards, passing 3000 in 1899 and 1900.
- In August 1896, 'Ranji' scored two hundreds at Hove on a single day, becoming the first cricketer to do so in a single day in a First-Class match. He scored 100 and 125 not out in the match on a single day, a feat nobody else has ever repeated.
- 'Ranji' made 15 appearances for England and scored 989 runs at an average close to 45. His First-Class record was even more impressive; more than 24,000 runs at 56.37 and 72 tons.
- He mentored nephew Duleep, who displayed exceptional talent as a batsman and arranged for him to receive full instructions at home. Duleep too travelled to Cambridge, following the footsteps of his illustrious uncle, and when he scored a scintillating 173 at Lord’s against Australia in 1930, a proud Ranji was cheering from the stands.
- The 'Ranji' Trophy, was named after him.
Whether Ranjitisinhji contributed to sport in India, or not, is a different matter, but in the cricketing world, he was undoubtedly a legend!
Kishorsinh D Jadeja