Balwinder Singh Sandhu is a former Indian Test cricketer. He represented India in eight Test matches as a medium pace bowler who could swing the ball and was a useful batsman.
|Real name/Full name
|Balwinder Singh Sandh
|Physical Stats & More
|in centimeters– 180 cm
in meters– 1.80 m
in feet & inches– 5’ 9”
|ODI– On 3 December 1982 against Pakistan at Jinnah Stadium Gujranwala
Test– On 14 January 1983 against Pakistan at Niaz Cricket Stadium at Hyderabad in Pakistan
T20I– Did not play
Note- There was no T20 at that time.
• Eagle Thane Strikers
|Right arm medium-fast
|Highest score by a debutant at no. 9 in Test cricket
Not Outs- 4
Highest Score- 71
0s- 1One Day Internationals
Not Outs- 3
Highest Score- 16
Ball Faced- 97
Strike Rate- 52.57
Runs Conceded- 557
Strike Rate- 102.0
10W- 0One Day Internationals
Runs Conceded- 763
Strike Rate- 69.3
|Date of Birth
|3 August 1956 (Friday)
|Age (As of 2024)
|67 Years of 2024
|Bombay (now Mumbai), Bombay State (now Maharashtra)
|Guru Nanak Technical High School, Mumbai
|• Guru Nanak Khalsa College, Mumbai
• Khalsa College & Jhunjhunwala College
• RN Jhunjhunwal College, Ghatkoper
|Master of Arts, Economics (1978 – 1984)
|Neelkanth Gardens in Govandi near Chembur, Mumbai
|Relationships & More
|Daughters– Timrar Kaur ( Nazo), and Jankeesh Kaur
|Father– Harnam Singh Naz (Renowned Poet)
Mother– Gurcharan Kaur
Stepmother– Surjit Kaur
|Grandfather- Sardar Jagat Singh Sandhu ( Malay army as “Havaldhar)
Grandmother– Jawal Kaur
|Sister– Paramjit Kaur (married Sajjan Singh Cheema, an Indian Basketball player, now an SSP in the Punjab Police and an Arjuna Awardee)
Stepsister– Nirmal Kaur
|Hockey, Football, Badminton
Some Lesser Known Facts About Balwinder Sandhu
- Balwinder Sandhu is a former international cricketer who played for India as a medium-fast bowler and a handy tailender. He played a crucial role for India in lifting the 1983 World Cup trophy. He was originally an inswinger bowler but later added out-swing to his armory while playing in Kanga Cricket League.
- His father was working in the Public Health department of the Punjab Government till 1948 and then shifted to Bombay (now Mumbai). He joined the Railways as a Ticket collector.
- He started watching cricket at the age of three. He used to play near his house during childhood with a tennis ball. After shifting to Nehru Nagar in Kurla, he saw the bigger ground and decided to play there. However, it was dirty so Balwinder (at that time he was 14 years old) thought of cleaning it with his friends. They all cleaned it and made a pitch right in the center of the ground and this started the rise of Balwinder’s interest in cricket.
- When he was 16 years old, he went to a summer vacation camp organized by the Bombay Cricket Association. He revealed,
He started becoming serious in cricket after joining Jhunjhunwala College where his performance got drastically improved and that instilled more passion in him. In that phase, he took 25 wickets in three matches.
- He started bowling pace when during Kanga Cricket League, his team’s fast bowler hasn’t come so Balwinder decided to go with the pace. Interestingly, he was getting wickets but was struggling on dry pitches. Then he learned the art of swing bowling.
- Remembering his experience with Ramakant Achrekar, he told,
- His career in cricket started late in 1980 when he was spotted by the former first-class cricketer Yeshwant ‘Baba’ Sidhaye during a summer training camp. Next year, he came under the eye of famous coach Ramakant Achrekar and spent a few years at ‘Shivaji Park’ maidan, Mumbai.
- He played his maiden first-class game in 1980-81 for Bombay when their regular fast bowler Karsan Ghavri was out of the game as he was playing international cricket. Sandhu did not get a chance to play in the first two games but eventually, he debut against Gujarat where he took nine wickets. Still, he was kept out of the side to play the final against Delhi. It was only when Ravi Kulkarni was dropped out, he came into the side where he took nine wickets in that match. He bowled the opening spell and helped Bombay to Delhi at 18 for 5 at one stage. He ended with nine wickets in that match and 25 wickets at an average of 18.72 in the whole tournament.
- Before that tournament, he played for Sind Sports Club at Kanga Cricket League in 1979 for Rajasthan. In the first match, he took four wickets for 36 runs and helped his side bowl out United Cricketers for 90 runs. In the next match, he took 7 for 35 against Shivaji Park Gymkhana.
- His entry to the Indian team came when he took five wickets in the Irani Trophy and eight wickets in a Duleep Trophy for West Zone in the 1982-83 season. He also scored 56 runs while batting at number 11 for West Zone.
- As Madan Lal was out of the match due to a Heel Bone injury, Sandhu got the chance to play the fourth test at Hyderabad where he dismissed Mohsin Khan and Haroon Rashid off successive deliveries. However, Javed Miandad and Mudassar Nazar went on to set the World record partnership of 451 runs. Sandhu then scored quickfire 71 runs while batting at number nine and had a crucial partnership with Mohinder Amarnath. These 71 runs came at a time when India was 72 for 7.
- In the following season against West Indies at Bridgetown, he scored 68 runs in the first inning. In the next test, he dismissed three Caribbean batters for just one run.
- Then came the 1983 World Cup where he had 22 runs partnership for the tenth wicket along with Syed Kirmani and helped India to score 183 in the finals of the tournament against West Indies.
- During that inning, he was hit by the bouncer of Malcolm Marshall’s bowling on his ears. Recalling that moment, he said,
He further adds,
- When West Indies came out to bat, Balwinder Sandhu bowled the opening spell along with Kapil Dev. He struck the major blow for West Indies by dismissing Gordon Greenidge, which set the tone for India’s victory. That Delivery was famously known as banana skin delivery’. Talking about that dismissal, in an interview he told,
- Balwinder Sandhu revealed his dismissal of Gordon Greenidge during the 1983 Cricket World Cup in an interview. He told,
- The last test of his career came against the Windies on 12 November 1983 in Ahmedabad. He took a single wicket in their second inning with Kapil Dev taking all nine wickets for 83 runs. Later in 1984-85, he scored 98 against Tamil Nadu and helped Bombay to take the first-innings lead in the Ranji semifinal.
- After retiring, he served as the coach of Mumbai and Punjab. He also worked with the National Cricket Academy. In 1990, he played in a Kenyan club. He also coached Baroda where he made subtle changes in Indian fast bowler Zaheer Khan‘s run-up. Under his tenure, Baroda came in the top four in the Ranji Trophy season. In 2008, he was associated with the Indian Cricket League (ICL) for some time.
- From September 2006 to June 2007, he served as the Head Cricket Coach in MP Cricket Association.
- From July 2008 till date, he is the Cricket Consultant at NACL Inc.USA.
- From August 2008 to April 2010, he became the Director of the Academy at Essel Sports Pvt. Ltd.
- He authored a book titled ‘The Devil’s Pack’ which was published on 1 February 2011. This book is about India’s journey in winning the 1983 Cricket World Cup.
- From November 2012 till date, he is the Director of Cricket Operations at The Sports Gurukul.
- In January 2015, he joined as the Managing Director at Inswing Broking LLP.
- On 24 December 2021, a Bollywood movie named ’83’ was released where Ammy Virk played the role of Balwinder Sandhu.
- His uncle Harcharan Singh played in the 1975 Hockey World Cup.
- He rates Kapil Dev’s 175 runs against Zimbabwe in the 1983 World Cup as the best innings ever in one-day cricket.
- Revealing some memorable moments in the 1983 World Cup, he told,