Ashish Nehra is regarded as one of the finest cricketers to have played for team India. Though the results might have not always favored him but his determination can’t be questioned. During his glorious career, Ashish Nehra gave many wonderful and memorable performances.
However, he gave one of the best performances during the 2003 World Cup match between India and England, which saw a sensational bowling effort from seamer Ashish Nehra.
On Tuesday, former Indan cricketer Aakash Chopra recalled how Ashish Nehra had a heavily swollen leg a day before that memorable encounter due to an injury and how he had to play the entire game with that injury. In his latest video on Facebook, Aakash Chopra said:
“World Cup 2003, India vs England on Durban pitch. It was a close contest. England were at 52/2 chasing 250. Ashish Nehra came into the attack. He takes a great run-up, gets a leading edge off from the bat and England captain Nasser Hussain had to return to the pavilion. Great breakthrough.”
“Then, came Alex Tudor (It was Paul Collingwood). He got out LBW. Michael Vaughan was caught behind. With this, half of England’s team fell down like a pack of cards. The Indian lions roared. But wait, you know this story, already right? Let me take you to the flashback, behind the scenes. This heavily swollen leg kept inside a bucket of ice… who is it?”
“This is the same Ashish Nehra who, the very next day, stepped out on the field to rattle the England batting unit with a swollen leg. As we say, there is nothing greater than a person’s will. Not even injuries. If Nehra ji has decided that he will play against England, then no one can stop him,”
“So, Nehra filled a bucket full of ice and kept his heavily swollen leg inside the bucket for hours. The next day, he heavily taped and bandaged his swollen leg, and wore thick, tight socks. Even though it was even difficult for him to wear his shoes, he still got ready, stood up, and went off to the field. With Dada’s faith in him, and his self-belief, Nehra ji achieved wonders which no one expected.”
During that match, former Indian pacer picked up six wickets as the England cricket team was bundled out for 168 in a 251-run chase in Durban. Ashish Nehra dismissed England captain Nasser Hussain, Micahel Vaughan, Alec Stewart, Paul Collingwood, Craig White, and Ronnie Irani in the match. Aakash Chopra further revealed:
“Nehra took a 6-wicket haul – a feat which no other Indian bowler has been able to achieve during a World Cup game. The thing to remember here is that the records will continue to be broken. The real story is that of passion, and not giving up. An injury can affect your body, but not your determination. Long Live, Nehra ji,”