If Keith Miller was the first really good all rounder to have ever played Test cricket, Vinoo Mankad was India’s answer to him. Playing in 44 Tests – before and after Independence – he managed to score more than 2000 runs and pick up 162 wickets for India.
There was no doubt in anyone’s mind that a talent like Mankad would do well at International level. And well he did. Unfortunately, he played cricket a time, when he was almost the only cricketer to perform on a consistent basis for the team and so could not win too many matches. He was also one of the very few cricketers to have batted in all positions in Tests and held a 413 run opening stand with Pankaj Roy. This record stood for 52 years before Graeme Smith and Neil McKenzie broke it. Mankad was also involved in a first-of-its-kind incident, when he ran out Australian batsman, Bill Brown at the non striker’s end, for backing too far. This helped in coining of a new term in cricket, called ‘Mankaded’. However, the media did not take too kindly to this “unsporting behaviour”.
Vinoo Mankad, whose real name was Mulvantrai Himmatlal, died in 1978, but his son Ashok Mankad also played in fifteen Tests after him. However, Harsh Mankad, Vinoo’s grandson, has taken to tennis and represents India at the Davis Cup.
- India Vs England at Lord's, London - Jun 22, 1946
- Last played:
- India Vs West Indies at Feroz Shah Kotla, Delhi - Feb 06, 1959