Sourav Ganguly (right) is one of India's most celebrated captain    AFP
Sourav Ganguly (right) is one of India’s most celebrated captain AFP

Sourav Ganguly made his international debut in 1991-92 tour of Australia. He was dropped after a solitary ODI, only to be picked four years later. The rest is history. Ganguly stroked a century on Test debut at Lord’s and followed with another at Trent Bridge. There was no looking back since. He emerged as one of India’s finest cricketers and most celebrated captains. As budding cricketers, you usually have role models the ones who are your favourite cricketers and you try and draw inspiration from them as you go on to develop your game.

Sachin Tendulkar had based his batting on his idols Sunil Gavaskar (for technique) and Viv Richards (for aggression). Ganguly, on the other hand, did not have to look beyond the dressing-room.

In an interview with HT Brunch, Ganguly revealed that his favourite cricketer is Sachin Tendulkar. An admirer of David Gower in his early days, Ganguly has always maintained that Tendulkar has remained his favourite cricketer for long.

Sourav Ganguly: Anil Kumble the most underrated cricketer
Sourav Ganguly: Anil Kumble the most underrated cricketer

Ganguly and Tendulkar have enjoyed great partnerships over the years and remain the most successful opening pair. Not just opening, the duo, good friends and great admirer of each other are cricket’s most prolific pair in ODIs. Their partnerships have accumulated 8,227 runs in ODIs at 47.55, which included 26 century stands. Ganguly and Tendulkar’s partnership average in Test reads 61.36.

Ganguly revealed lesser known facts about himself:

Little known habits: I want all my things properly arranged in the right place. I am a very quiet person and I am a loner.

Now that is quite a revelation from one of cricket’s most vocal and extrovert characters!

Superstition: When I used to play, I would put my left pad first.

Most filmy thing done: Taking my shirt off in the balcony of Lord’s cricket ground after beating England in the NatWest Series final.

Favourite movie: Sholay

Favourite holiday destination: London

Virat Kohli’s captaincy: Apart from his understanding of the game, I think the way he handles his players is simply superb.

Most underrated cricketer: Anil Kumble. I think he is the biggest match winner India have ever produced. We speak about a Sachin Tendulkar or a Virat Kohli or a Ravichandran Ashwin, but it is a fact that Kumble has won far more matches for India than anyone else.

More challenging administration or playing: Both are different. But playing on the field was definitely more challenging and far more fulfilling.