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I hope the focus is not just on me in ’83, says Kapil Dev

'83, directed by Kabir Khan, also starring Tahir Raj Bhasin, Pankaj Tripathi, Saqib Saleem, Hardy Sandhu, among others, is seen as one of the most anticipated films of 2020.

By: PTI | Mumbai |
Updated: January 5, 2020 4:21:56 pm
kapil dev 83 ’83 features Ranveer Singh as Kapil Dev, who led the team to India’s first-ever World Cup win against the mighty West Indies.

Former India World Cup-winning captain Kapil Dev hopes that the focus is not just on him, but on the entire squad in the upcoming film ’83 which narrates the story of the historic 1983 World Cup triumph.

In ’83, directed by Kabir Khan, features Ranveer Singh as Kapil Dev, who led the team to India’s first-ever World Cup win against the mighty West Indies.

Point him out that the focus will be on him in the film, the legendary all-rounder, said, “I hope not.”

“I am the captain, I am a team man. I think everybody should get their performance to look at. I don’t look at my performance, it is the team’s performance.

“That’s how the game of cricket is. It is not about one person but everybody. Everybody gave 100 percent and that’s how the team won the World Cup,” Dev told PTI in an interview.

The movie, also starring Tahir Raj Bhasin, Pankaj Tripathi, Saqib Saleem, Hardy Sandhu, among others, is seen as one of the most anticipated films of 2020.

Dev said his job was to share as much information as possible with the makers.

“We know what we did. It is difficult to judge what they are going to put in and make. So you sit and give your side of the story and let them do it, they are smart people, they had done enough research,” he said.

The veteran cricketer said he was initially concerned about how the makers will show the historical win on the celluloid.

“When I first heard the story, I was confused, I didn’t know how it will happen. There is so much to talk about it. You are concerned about how it will come out. We are a little bit concerned and worried about how the movie will come out but I do hope everything will be ok,” he added.

Dev also coached Ranveer for the film and the entire cast was trained by former India players Balwinder Sandhu and Yashpal Sharma, who were part of the World Cup winning team.

Asked how important it is to get the formal training in cricket right, Dev said, “I think it was not easy. You are trying to create something which happened 30 to 40 years back with so many characters. It is not just one Kapil Dev. There is a team of 14 players and to bring them all together, it is quite a tough job.”

‘83, produced by Madhu Mantena, Vishnu Induri and Kabir, and presented by Reliance Entertainment, will be released on April 10.

In reality, when asked as a captain how difficult was it then to lead a team that was considered as underdogs, Dev said, “Nothing is difficult when you are enjoying something. When you are passionate about something it is not difficult. I have never taken it as a difficult thing. Never at all. It was enjoyable and fantastic.

“That’s the way I look into life. When you are in love, it is a great time, it is not a difficult time. Similarly, when you are playing for the country it is a good time, it is not a difficult time. If it is a difficult time then don’t play.”

Competing with two time World Champions West Indies, which had some of the greatest players of all time — Gordon Greenidge, Desmond Haynes, Clive Llyod, Vivian Richards in the finals at Lord’s, didn’t seem easy but Dev said for him and his team-mates the aim was to give their best.

India were all out for just 183. So, what was the discussion at the break and according to Kapil, he motivated the team by saying “they are the best”.

“Basically, we wanted to just enjoy and give our 100 per cent. We had reached here so we must have done something really well, those kinds of chats we had. On the ground, you don’t say the other team is bigger than you, you say, you are the best team and then you believe in yourself,” he added.

He further said while playing cricket one shouldn’t look at the result but play the game with a positive mindset.

“You have to keep on doing your best. With sports one has to understand that you are not looking for the result, you are looking to play good cricket. We just went in and start saying our team is good enough, we are ready to win every match. You have to think positive. That is the only message I believe in.”

When Team India came on the field to ball, Dev believes right from the beginning, every moment was a game changer for them.

“I think from the first wicket from Balwinder Singh Sandhu bowled that was also a game-changer, why only say, the catch (of Richards) changed the game. At every step, we were changing the game,” he added. Sandhu dismissed Greenidge for 1.

Dev will be turning 61 on January 6 and it is like any other day for him.

“I like to spend the day as simply as possible. Nothing has changed in that,” he added.

The team of ’83 has recreated Dev’s match-winning innings of 175 runs against Zimbabwe at Tunbridge stadium.

Kabir had earlier said that a video capturing the moment will be unveiled on January 6, which is Dev’s birthday.

“It is nice it is coming out. It is all wonderful,” Dev said.

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