Born on 11th January 1973 in a Marathi Family in Indore (M.P.), Rahul Dravid is a former Indian cricketer who is also famous by his nickname ‘The Wall’. The undoubted ‘Gentleman’ Rahul Dravid made his international ODI debut on 3rd April 1996 against Sri-Lanka and made a successful Test debut against England at Lords in 1996 scoring 95 runs in his debut inning. Dravid got a huge success in his test career but his ODI career got stabilized only after his good performance in his debut world cup in 1999, where he emerged as an exemplary No.3 batsman of Indian cricket team. He was the top run getter in 1999 world cup with 461 runs. After that Dravid followed the same success story in both ODI and Test cricket. In 2001 at Eden Gardens he scored an exemplary 180 runs in 2nd innings, also in the same match VVS Laxman scored 281 runs causing his innings go unnoticed. He was made the vice-captain in 2003 world cup. The Indian Team performed well and reached up to finals, losing to Australia in Final match. During 2003-2004 season Dravid scored 3 double centuries, including a 223 runs against Australia. Also he won the Man of the series award for scoring 619 runs in this Series. In 2004 during Ganguly’s absence he led the team to its First Test Victory against Pakistan in Rawalpindi. He scored a handsome sum of 270 runs in 1st innings of this test but this superb innings also got eclipsed under the 309 runs scored by Virender Sehwag in the same series. He led Rajasthan Royals very well for consecutive 3 years and the team unexpectedly reached semi-finals every time under his captaincy in IPL and reached up to finals twice but his leadership again got unnoticed because of consecutive IPL wins by Chennai Superkings.
His career saw a progressive downfall after the very poor performance by Team India in 2007 world cup under his captaincy. He was dropped from ODI teams and was recalled in 2011 against England for Test series where he scored 3 centuries although India lost the series 4-0 losing the top position of ICC Test rankings. He declared his retirement in 2011 after his last series against England. Very few people know that India has a record of 17 consecutive ODI wins while chasing. Out of these 17, 15 wins were under captaincy of Dravid.
Always played with his full devotion for his country but always remained under the shadow of other great names like Tendulkar, Ganguly, Sehwag, Laxman, etc. Even in his last match everybody focussed on Sachin Tendulkar who was playing his last match in coloured clothing. As felt by me, he is the real unsung hero of Indian Cricket who deserved much more than what he got from the cricket fans of the nation.