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Top 5 oldest living Indian test cricketers

Published at :February 13, 2024 at 8:40 PM
Modified at :February 13, 2024 at 8:40 PM
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(Courtesy : Twitter)


Here we talk about five oldest people currently who represented India in test cricket once upon a time.

India has a rich cricketing history when we talk about test cricket. Many legendary players have left an indelible mark in the longest format while playing for their nation in international cricket. However, among these cricketing stalwarts, there are very few players who have continued to be a living testament to the golden period of Indian cricket. 

On February 13 2024, the then India’s oldest living test cricketer and former skipper, Dattajirao Gaekwad, passed away aged 95 years due to age-related issues. In 2016, Gaekwad became the oldest living test cricketer for India after death of former batter Deepak Shodhan at the age of 87. The former Indian captain, Dattajiro Gaekwad played 11 test matches for India.

Here are the top five oldest living Indian test cricketers:

5. Vaman Kumar – 88 years 235 days

Indian cricket, Indian test cricket, Indian test cricketers, Vaman Kumar, Chandu Borde, Nari Contractor, Chandrakant Patankar, CD Gopinath
Vaman Kumar. (Pic source: Twitter)

Vaman Viswanath Kumar, often known as VV Kumar, was born on June 22, 1935. Kumar played First Class (FC) cricket for Tamil Nadu from 1955–56 to 1976–77. Vaman Kumar was one of India’s finest leg-break bowlers in Indian cricket history. However, with the rise of BS Chandrasekhar, Kumar couldn’t play more than two test games for India.

The leg-break bowler made his test debut against Pakistan on February 11, 1961. However, shortly after his debut, Kumar played his last international game against England on November 11, 1961. In three test innings, the former Indian cricketer scalped seven wickets for his side with a BBM of 7/132. Kumar was the first Indian bowler to pick up 300 wickets in the Ranji Trophy.

4. Chandu Borde – 89 years, 206 days

Indian cricket, Indian test cricket, Indian test cricketers, Vaman Kumar, Chandu Borde, Nari Contractor, Chandrakant Patankar, CD Gopinath
Chandu Borde. ( Pic source: Twitter)

Chandrakant Gulabrao Borde, popularly known as Chandu Borde, was born on July 21, 1934. The former Indian cricketer made his test debut against the West Indies on November 28, 1958. The right-handed batter played 55 test matches for India in the late 1950s and 1960s.

Now 89-year-old, Chandu Borde amassed 3061 runs and also picked up 52 wickets with a BBM of 6/132 in 55 test matches he played for India in test cricket. Borde was a fine middle-order batter, and he was also a handy leg-spinner for his national side.

Chandu Borde also captained the Indian side in a test game against Australia in 1967–68. Borde’s prime form came against England in 1961/62, where he smashed 314 runs and took 16 wickets in the five-match test series.

3. Nari Contractor – 89 years, 342 days

Indian cricket, Indian test cricket, Indian test cricketers, Vaman Kumar, Chandu Borde, Nari Contractor, Chandrakant Patankar, CD Gopinath
Nari Contractor. (Pic source: Twitter)

Nariman Jamshdedji Contractor, also known as Nari Contractor, was born on March 7, 1934. The former Indian cricketer was a left-handed opening batter who played in 31 tests for India. However, his international career was cut short by a deadly bouncer by Charlie Griffith of West Indies.

During India’s colony game against Barbados in 1962, Nari was hit on the skull by a short delivery from Charlie Griffith, after which, his life was in danger and he needed several emergency operations to get out of danger. Almost after two years, was playing First Class cricket, but despite a brave attempt to stage a comeback in tests, he could never make it.

In 1952, Contractor’s First Class cricket career got off to an unplanned start. The former cricketer grabbed that opportunity from both hands, where he notched up centuries in both innings for Gujarat against Baroda. The 89-year-old, Nari Contractor made his test debut against New Zealand on December 2, 1955, and played his last match against the West Indies on March 2, 1962.

During his test career for India, Nari scored 1611 runs with a strikeout rate of 31.59 in 31 matches and 52 innings. The left-handed opener also smashed a century while playing for the national side.

2. Chandrakant Patankar – 93 years, 80 days

Indian cricket, Indian test cricket, Indian test cricketers, Vaman Kumar, Chandu Borde, Nari Contractor, Chandrakant Patankar, CD Gopinath
Chandrakant Patankar. (Image source: Twitter)

Chandrakant Trimbak Patankar was born on November 24, 1930. The former Indian cricketer was a right-handed batter who represented India in just one test.

Chhandrakant made his test debut for India against New Zealand on December 28, 1955. He was a wicket-keeper and a lower batter for India. The 93-year-old former player also represented Maharashtra and Mumbai teams in the Ranji Trophy. While representing India in test cricket, Chandrakant Patankar scored 14 runs in two innings he batted and added few crucial partnerships in the game.

In First Class cricket, while representing Maharashtra and Mumbai, Patankar played 26 matches and scored 503 runs including one century. He took 37 catches and affected 20 stumpings.

1. CD Gopinath – 93 years, 348 days

Indian cricket, Indian test cricket, Indian test cricketers, Vaman Kumar, Chandu Borde, Nari Contractor, Chandrakant Patankar, CD Gopinath
CD Gopinath. (Image source: Twitter)

Chingleput Doraikannu Gopinath, also known as CD Gopinath was born on 1 March 1930. A former Indian cricketer who had a wide range of strokes. However, his test record doesn’t justify how great batter he was in Indian domestic circuit.

The right-handed batter made his test debut for India against England in 1951-52 where he batted at No.8. Gopinath played crucial knocks against England on his test debut, where he smashed 50* runs in the first and 42 runs in the second innings.

The former Indian cricketer played eight test matches for India and smashed 242 runs at an average of 22.00.

However his International statistics doesn’t justify his performance as his records in the Indian domestic circuit were far better. The 93-year-old Gopinath played 83 First Class matches and amassed 4259 runs for Tamil Nadu.

The great Indian cricketer played his last international match against Australia in January 1960. Gopinath is the last surviving member of India’s first test-winning team.

(All numbers updated till 13th February, 2024)

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