Rahul Dravid is hailed as India’s most dependable batsman. He was born on January 11, 1973 in Indore. Dravid, who started his cricket at 12, grew up playing in the streets of Bangalore. Cricket was in Dravid’s family. His father played the game and his uncle, K.V. Dravid, played for the Holkars. His school, st. Joseph’s had a good team and Dravid did well in the junior tournaments to merit selection in the State under-15, under-17 and under-19 tournaments. In the home under-19 series against New Zealand, Dravid led India and did well with the bat with a century in the Test at Bombay and fifties in two one-day matches. His Ranji season in 1992 also was profitable. He began with a 126 against Goa and followed it with a 128 against Kerala in the next match. Dravid has been fortunate to have someone like G.R. Vishvanath to help him. In 1996 in England he almost alone of the younger Indian batsman, proved to have the technique to cope with conditions that aided seam and swing.
Rahul has been one of the pillars of the Indian batting with his blend of technical proficiency and stylish strokes. His good and innocent looks make him very popular among the girls. Ever since he burst upon the scene at Lord’s in 1996. In a side bristling with dashing batsman, he has frequently played the sheet anchor role to perfection. He has had a could hanging over his head for years. A criticism that he cannot play fast enough in the shorter version of the game has been wiped off. Through sheer practice, innovative strokes and imaginative placing of the ball, he has transformed himself into an integral part of the team. He has shown the world that he is as effective in the shorter version as in Test cricket. Recognition is long due for this great cricketer.
A number of times he has bailed India out of trouble and to top it win it for India. There isn’t another player in World Cricket who has performed so consistently in crunch situations as much as Dravid. Dravid has matured so much as a cricketer over the years that even the former greats; hail him as one of the best technicians and crisis man of all eras. Having a cricketer like Dravid adds such assurance to the entire teams well as the supporters. The top order thinks that they can play the way they want knowing that Dravid is there to stop any possible hiccups. The lower order is always calm to see Dravid ‘The Wall’ on the crease.
For sheer consistency, Dravid has few equals and his maintained a Test career average of over 50. Dravid is very much like the batsman who likes to play his shots, mostluy on the rise, relying more on timing than brute force. His temperament is exemplary and his concentration legendary. A batsman who revels in crises, Dravid against New Zealand in January 1999, joined the ranks of Vijay Hazare and Sunil Gavaskar as one of only three Indians to have scored a century in each innings in a Test. The poor run in Australia in 1999-2000 was only a passing phase and he returned to top from the next season, including notching up his first double century in Tests. His promotion as vice captain was widely acclaimed. His opponent has hailed him equally.
So many tags have been attached with him like “The Wall” for obvious reasons, Mr. Dependable and various others. He is known as ‘Jammy’ among his fellow cricketers because his father worked in a jam factory. He is one of the modest, unassuming and well-behaved players of Indian cricket time. Most recently he has been awarded the Wisden Test Player Award for his excellent performance in the previous season. A cool head over the shoulder makes him the most sought player on the cricketing world arena. On May 4, 2003 he tied the knot with Vijeta Pendharkar, a doctor from Nagpur. The marriage was strictly a private affair. There are walls, which are not good enough to withhold the severest of disasters. India will be proud that Rahul ‘Dependable Wall’ Dravid is much stronger than all other walls.