Indore’s unique tribute to Indian cricket team’s achievements - A massive bat | india-vs-australia-2017 | Hindustan Times
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Indore’s unique tribute to Indian cricket team’s achievements - A massive bat

Indore has presented a unique tribute to the achievements of the Indian cricket team by building a giant-sized cricket bat for the team’s success against England and West Indies in 1971.

india vs australia 2017 Updated: Sep 23, 2017 09:57 IST
The Vijay Balla is located at the Old Nehru Stadium in Indore.
The Vijay Balla is located at the Old Nehru Stadium in Indore.(HT Photo)

In sports, statues and monuments are erected to honour the legendary contributions of the individual. Cricket is no different. There are stadiums and stands named after legendary cricketers. However, Indore, the venue for the third ODI between India and Australia, has built a unique tribute to honour the Indian cricket team’s success.

About 2 kms away from the Holkar stadium lies the Old Nehru stadium. Just beside the stadium is a park. On the right hand side of the park is the Vijay Balla or the Victory bat. This giant concrete cricket bat was built as a tribute to the Indian cricket team that had secured their first Test series wins away against England and West Indies in 1971.

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The tall bat has inscriptions of all the players involved in the two historic series, from the likes of Bishan Singh Bedi, Bhagwath Chandrasekhar, Ajit Wadekar and Sunil Gavaskar. The monument was erected in 2009 and it was inaugurated by none other than Wadekar, the captain of the team who led the side to those famous wins.

The Vijay Balla was erected after India’s away Test series wins in 1971 over England and the West Indies. (HT Photo)

1971 a golden year

1971 was a golden year for Indian cricket. They first embarked on a tour to the West Indies, a side which included the likes of Roy Fredericks, Clive Lloyd and Sir Garfield Sobers. However, India defied the odds and won the second Test in Port-of-Spain by seven wickets. India went on to win the five-match series 1-0, with Sunil Gavaskar smashing 774 runs in the series.

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After the West Indies success, India arrived in England. The team had lost 15 out of 19 Tests in the country. After drawing the first two Tests, Chandrasekhar spun his magic and picked up 6/38 as India secured a four-wicket win at The Oval to win the match and a series in England for the first time.

46 years later, the feats of those Indian cricketers still stand tall as the Vijay Balla.