‘Impossible to have another Kapil Dev’

Kapil Dev appreciating himself is rare. He does not discuss his achievements. But his eyes sparkled at the sight of his wax statue, unveiled here on Thursday, as part of the upcoming Madame Tussauds Museum at the Regal Building in Connaught Place.

One more over... Kapil Dev during the inauguration of his wax statue at the Madame Tussauds Musueum in New Delhi on Thursday.   -  Special Arrangement

Kapil Dev appreciating himself is rare. He does not discuss his achievements. But his eyes sparkled at the sight of his wax statue, unveiled here on Thursday, as part of the upcoming Madame Tussauds Museum at the Regal Building in Connaught Place here.

“I like it. Almost like me,” Kapil said. The figure to be installed at the Museum later this year is Kapil in bowling action from sometime in the 1980s.

“He is an iconic sports personality in cricket and this figure captures the moment, a dynamic pose that encapsulates his bowling,” said Neil Linssen, one of the members of the Museum’s research team. “We had a team that went into finalising the pose and we are happy that he liked it too. He comes across a very humble person,” Linssen added.

For Anshul Jain, General Manager of Merlin Entertainment India, the Delhi museum would be different from the other 22 around the world. “It will focus on local themes with 60 per cent of the Delhi Museum featuring Indians,” he informed.

“It is an honour and feels nice,” said Kapil. “I had to take off my clothes, didn't have to strip totally but it was weird. It's a new thought. I was more educated about how this is done. I felt it was a little too much. Now I can see he has lost a little bit of weight,” Kapil talked of his experience with the team of the Museum.

When asked if there could be another like him, Kapil observed, “Impossible to have another Kapil Dev. But there will be better Kapils, 100s more. (Ravichandran) Ashwin is an all rounder. (Ravindra) Jadeja and (MS) Dhoni too are fabulous all rounders. Anyone with more than one skill is a good all rounder. I wish a fast bowler and batsman comes out but this Indian team has enough players.”

On the forthcoming Champions Trophy, to be held in England from June 1 to 18, Kapil was optimistic, “We have the team to defend the title. Very strong on paper. Selectors have done a good job. We should respect the selectors who have picked the team. Depends on how they maintain themselves in that couple of weeks and keep pressure on the opponents.”

All the young Indian pacers have bowled well. I am delighted to see Bhuvi (Bhuvneshwar Kumar) and (Jasprit) Bumrah. When he (Bumrah) started bowling we were not sure if he would last this long with an awkward action. He has done very well.”

Kapil, however, cautioned. “England will be difficult to play in their conditions. Their team is very good. It will depend on how the Indians maintain themselves in that couple of weeks and keep pressure on the opponents,” he said.

On the possibility of India playing Pakistan in a bilateral series sometime in the future, Kapil reiterated his stand. “We should leave it to the government.”

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