As soon as the name of Mohammad Kaif comes to Indian cricket lovers, the first memory of that is Lord’s ground. Where the fans felt that after the dismissal of Sachin Tendulkar, Team India now lost the final of the NETWEST series, but in 2002 that day was miraculous and it was done by Mohammad Kaif. This miracle of Kaif forced Sourav Ganguly to take off the shirt on Lord’s balcony.
Born in Prayagraj (then Allahabad), Kaif has studied up to 12th from Mewa Lal Ayodhya Prasad Intermediate College Soraon. After this, he settled in the cricket world. Since childhood, his mind was settled in cricket and he moved from Prayagraj to Kanpur. Here he started living in the hostel of Green Park Stadium. From here his journey reached the Indian cricket team.
Made India the under-19 World Cup champions for the first time
The hard work of domestic cricket earned him a place in the Indian Under-19 cricket team. He was handed the captaincy in the Under-19 World Cup in Sri Lanka in 2000 and he made Team India the World Champion in this category. Under his leadership, India won the under-19 World Cup for the first time. This year, he was included in the Indian Test team on the tour of South Africa. He became part of the ODI team only two years later and he represented Team India in the 2003 World Cup. At that time, he along with Yuvraj Singh used to be the backbone of the middle order of the Indian team.
In 2002, Dada was forced to take off the shirt on Lord’s balcony
His innings played against England in the final of the 2002 NETWEST Trophy is counted among the most memorable innings of Indian cricket. Kaif played an unbeaten 87 runs in this match played on Lord’s ground and gave India a historic win. In the final match of the NatWest Trophy, Kaif had chased down the target of 325 runs with Yuvraj Singh and helped India win by sharing 121 runs for the sixth wicket. After this victory, Captain Sourav Ganguly celebrated by taking off his shirt in Lord’s balcony.
After Sachin’s dismissal, Kaif’s family went to see the film
Mohammad Kaif had told in an interview a few years ago that after the dismissal of Sachin Tendulkar in 2002, everyone felt that the match was over. Kaif’s family living in Allahabad felt the same. That is why his father also went to see Devdas film with the family. But from behind his son gave this victory to the country.
Nasir tried to break by sledding
Mohammad Kaif told that when he came to bat, Nasir Hussain sled and he took time to understand it. Actually, Nasir called Kaif a bus driver. After which Kaif said that it is not bad for the bus driver. Kaif said that the team had to achieve the big target of 326 runs and our mood was not right before coming to bat. Yuvraj and I were together in the youth team and both of us understood each other better. Yuvi was playing his shots and I started taking runs too. The match started progressing slowly.
Mohammad Kaif’s cricket career
Kaif played 125 ODIs for India, scoring 2753 runs at an average of 32.01. His highest score was 111. He scored two centuries and 17 half-centuries in his ODI career. Kaif also played 13 Test matches for India. Kaif averaged 32.84 in the long format of the game, with the help of which he has scored 624 runs in 22 innings. Kaif has one century and three half-centuries in Tests. His highest score is 148. Kaif is considered one of the best fielders of Indian cricket. He was also part of the Indian team that reached the final of the World Cup in 2003. Kaif played his last international match on the tour of South Africa in 2006. He is currently a part of the coaching team of Delhi Capitals in the IPL.