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OTD | One of India’s premier spinners Ghulam Ahmed was born in 1922  

OTD | One of India's premier spinners Ghulam Ahmed was born in 1922  

Ghulam Ahmed is a huge pioneer in the art of spin bowling in India. The lanky spinner from Hyderabad was one of the biggest match-winners for India who bore the brunt of Indian bowling for a long time.

At a time when the Indian team was trying to find its niche, it was Ghulam Ahmed who was bowling tirelessly for his team. He may have picked just 68 wickets with the ball but that doesn’t hide the fact that he was a huge figure in the annals of Indian cricket.

As the spinners in the later generations came to the fore, they always cited Ghulam Ahmed as an inspiration. His accuracy and his bowling talents made him a huge threat to the opposition batters.

Ghulam Ahmed: A connoisseur of spin bowling

Born on the 4th of July in 1922, Ghulam Ahmed made his first-class debut as a part of the old British India. His most formative years were taken away due to the 2nd World War. Once India gained its independence, Ghulam Ahmed was one of the first players to be called the shining lights.

In his very first Test vs the West Indies, he picked 4/94 from 35.2 overs.  This was followed by 2 more wickets in the second innings. With each passing game, the legend and the talents of Ghulam Ahmed just kept growing.

At a time when cricket was far less, Ghulam Ahmed became a crowd favourite. There were huge appeals whenever he beat a batter and the close-in fielders were kept busy when he had the ball in his hands.

During an era when Indian cricket was in its infancy, Ghulam Ahmed was the perfect soldier for any skipper he played under. In his final game for India, Ghulam Ahmed picked 1 wicket of Basil Butcher for 100. This was the game where he was the captain as India lost by an innings and 336 runs.

That was the end of his Test career as the huge loss meant that one of the leading lights of Indian cricket saw a hasty end. Ghulam Ahmed died in 1998 at the age of 76 but he left behind a legacy that is still being lauded. 


Also read: Former New Zealand all-rounder Sir Richard Hadlee was born in 1951

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