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Last Updated Monday April 23 2018 07:18 AM IST

Of Kapil, Peter Kirsten and the Friendship Series!

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Kapil Dev Kapil Dev. File photo

Team India have embarked on their tour of South Africa amid huge expectations. The top-ranked Test side in the world is eyeing its maiden series win on South African soil. Incidentally, India have never won a bilateral ODI series in the Rainbow Nation.

However, India have fared much better in ICC events in South Africa. The team under Sourav Ganguly made it it to the final of the ICC World Cup co-hosted by South Africa, Zimbabwe and Kenya in 2003.

Four years later, M S Dhoni's team scripted a memorable triumph in the inaugural ICC World T20.

As Virat Kohli's men hope to create history, revisiting India's maiden tour of South Africa in 1992 is inevitable.

South Africa, who were readmitted to international cricket the previous year, had captured the imagination of the cricket lovers with their splendid show in the ICC World Cup held in Australia and New Zealand earlier in the year. Only a bizarre rain rule ended their dream run in the semifinals against England.

India's tour of South Africa was titled Friendship Series. India, captained by Mohammad Azharuddin, drew the first two Tests before action shifted to the seven-match ODI series.

The hosts won the first match by six wickets to go one up. India suffered another batting collapse in the second one-dayer at Port Elizabeth and were bowled out for a paltry 147.

South African opener Andrew Hudson was cleaned up by Kapil Dev for five. The Indian all-rounder then courted controversy when he ran out South Africa's batting mainstay Peter Kirsten for backing up too far at the non-striker's end.

Kapil was in his delivery stride when he saw the South African No. 3 out of the crease, took off the bails and appealed. South African umpire Cyril Mitchley had no option but to rule Kirsten out. Kirsten, who is the half-brother of Gary Kirsten, left the field fuming. Kapil was quick to remind Kirsten that he had warned him thrice in the series.

The drama did not end there as the Indian team management complained to match referee Clive Lloyd that South African skipper Kepler Wessels hit Kapil on his shin with the bat while turning for a second run later in the game. However, Wessels was let off as Lloyd could not find TV footage to substantiate the claims of the Indians.

South Africa won the match by six wickets and went on to the clinch the series 5-2. India also lost the four-match Test series 1-0.

At the end of the second ODI, South African all-rounder Dave Callaghan had this to say about the Kirsten run-out: “So this is what the f***ing Friendship Series is all about!”

Read also: More Cricket NewsEast Bengal beat Gokulam to take top spot

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