SSD & ST vs West Indies 2001
Paeans to the master
Khel ki maidan main utarte hi jiska jay jaykar hota hai, cricket ki dunia main nam he uska odisha ka bir putra kahelata hai, shiv sankar ka bardan he jisko wohi Shiv Sundar kahelata hai
S.S.DAS THE CRICKETER
Some are born great, some achieve greatness, and some have greatness thrust upon them. Shiv Sundar Das achieved greatness by dint of his dedication, discipline, humility and work ethics. Das studied in DM School and passed his Class Ten examination in the year 1992. He continued his education in DM School to complete his Class Twelve examination in commerce. In 1997 Das graduated in commerce from BJB College. Das had a brilliant academic career and was good in many sports like Football, Basketball, Vollyball, Table tennis, lawn tennis, athletics but his love for cricket made him a distinguished figure in the Indian Cricket history and a hero in the eyes of Cricket enthusiasts in this cricket crazy country.
As a cricketer, he made his way into the Indian cricket test team after proving his skills as an opening batsman in the Ranji Trophy, Duleep Trophy, Deodhar Trophy, NKV Salve Challenger Trophy, India Colts, India under 19, India A, National Cricket Academy games. Shiv Sundar Das was born as the fourth child of Sri Uttam Das and Smt. Kanchanabala Das, in village Banamalipur, under the Balipatna Block, in the district of Khurda which was previously a part of Puri district. His friends, brother Satya Sundar Das, sisters Sujata Das and Sucheta Das all call Das by his nick name “Budha”.
Shiv Sundar Das came to the national limelight when he was declared as the captain of India Colts (under 17 team) for the England tour. He was in the first batch of National Cricket Academy (NCA) of cricket in Bangalore which was inaugurated on 01.05.2000. The First batch of NCA consisted of best young talents of that time as the trainees at the camp were: Nikhil Haldipur, Sridharan Sriram, Shiv Sundar Das, Anshu Jain, Mohammed Kaif, Gautam Gambhir, Niraj Patel, Mihir Diwakar, Yuvaraj Singh, Ramesh Powar, Reetinder Singh Sodhi, Laxmi Ratan Shukla, Ajay Ratra, Rohit Jelani, Murali Karthik, Anup Dave, Harbhajan Singh, Sarandeep Singh, Prashanth Chandra Menon, Saulabh Srivastav, Zaheer Khan, Fazal Mohammed, Rakesh Patel and Tinu Yohanan. Most of the trainees benefited from the NCA training. Rodney Marsh, former Australian wicket-keeper- batsman and who was the Director of the Commonwealth Cricket Academy at Adelaide made a succinct summation at the inauguration of the Academy when he cautioned the young hopefuls selected to train at the academy.
"Be aware of a couple of facts,'' Marsh said. Just because you are at the academy it does not give you the right to play for India. You get the right to represent India only if you are good enough. The ability rests in your hands, '' Rodney Marsh reiterated to the athletes as he prefers to calls them. "The second fact is that just because India now has a cricket Academy it does not necessarily mean that India will win all its one-day matches from now on. The results could permeate only after four or five years. This is only phase one of the academy and we want to bring in a new culture and a new hardness in the players,'' Marsh added. " Cricket is now a game of new technology, new sports sciences and it is a huge industry worldwide. This academy will strive to bring the best facilities to the young players to gain from these improvements, but the passion must come from within,'' Marsh stressed.
The big break for him was selection to the National Cricket Academy in May 2000 where he got the chance to interact closely with his idol Sunil Gavaskar among others. In June-July, Das visited the Australian Cricket Academy under the Gavaskar-Border scholarship, which he believes was the best thing that happened to him. The intensive six week course has instilled a sense of professionalism in the pint-sized opener.
Das' attitude towards the game has matured and his confidence levels have soared sky high. The sojourn Down Under has firmed up his backfoot play, especially cutting and pulling. Das was in full cry during the NCA's victorious campaign in the MRF- Buchi Babu tournament in Chennai in September, 2000, making a marvelous 184 against Karnataka cricket team which included the ace Indian fast bowler Venkatesh Prasad. A former India Under-17 captain, Das has journeyed through the ranks of junior level cricket with distinction. Although making 98 on his first class debut as a 16-year-old in the 1993-94 Ranji Trophy pre quarterfinals, he was no overnight prodigy, honing his skills through methodical hard work over several seasons of domestic cricket.
Das first started playing for his state in 1992 at U-16 level. In 1993-94 he had a good season in U-19's with one double hundred and a big hundred against Bihar. That's how he got picked for the Ranji Trophy that year. He made his Ranji debut in 1993-94 against Madhya Pradesh and got 98. That was a turning point because Orissa were looking for an opener. That was the first big game for Das. I think it was one of the best things that happened to Das as a cricketer when under the watchful eyes of Indian Cricketing legend Sunil Gavaskar he was selected for training in Australia. The experience was brilliant. Rodney Marsh was Director of the Academy and Wayne Phillips was the coach during that time. They stressed a lot on physical fitness. The nets were just for one and a half hours. There were also a lot of batting drills done. I think my attitude towards cricket has improved a lot.
They did boxing which was a new experience. They had never done that sort of thing before. It was also a new experience to play against bowling machines. One can just set his pace and practice cuts, pulls and so on. All this is helped him a lot. The Aussies are very professional. There is a stress on quality, not quantity. They're always very aggressive in their attitude, always very confident. Das’s confidence levels had gone up after staying in Australia for six weeks.
On his stint at the National Cricket Academy (NCA)
It was very systematic. They had to maintain a diary. He had never trained so hard during the off season. They had a dietician coming twice a week. They had psychology classes. So it was a completely different thing for us. We got to learn a lot from these classes. It was a privilege for the NCA trainees when Sunil Gavaskar came to the Academy. He was there for 2-3 days. Being an opener and being his idol, he really helped Das a lot. Das had spoken to Sunil Gavaskar for about half an hour and sorted out some technical problems.
On how his game has tightened up since
The NCA Bangalore and the Australian experience improved him lot. Now he was a totally different player. His footwork improved a lot. His back foot play improved a lot. In Australia they practiced a lot of slashes, cuts and pulls. These areas of his game also improved.
On the innings he would like to be remembered by
His debut game was one of his best game. It was his first class debut and he had to deliver the goods for his state team against Madhya Pradesh in 1993-94, where he missed the century on debut by just two runs. His debut triple hundred came against Jammu and Kashmir in 2006-07 which was the first triple hundred in the Ranji Trophy since the 2000-01 Ranji season. Das was part of the famous Indian cricket team which stopped the Steve Waugh led Australian juggernaut. After defeat in Mumbai, the Indian team played a magic game to bounce back to bring a turnaround in the test series. Das as an opener and a close in fielder gave his best to the team to win the test series against Australia in 2001. He was the man of the series in the 2001 Zimbabwe test series. Das had dedicated his first Man of the match award in a test match to his parents- Uttam Das, Kanchanabala Das and his first cricket coach Kishore Mania.
Kishore Mania is the person who taught the ABC of cricket to Das. Das was inspired to play cricket by his elder brother Satya Sundar Das. Sri Bismaya Samal took Das to Kishore Mania to turn the passion of Das to his profession. Das made first class debut against Madhya Pradesh in Indore in 1993-94 under the captaincy of Ranjib Biswal. Amiya Ray, Ranjib Biswal, Prasanta Mohapatra have helped Das to sharpen his cricketing skills. Das made his international debut against Bangladesh in Dhaka in November 10, 2000 under the captaincy of Sourav Ganguly. Das had played 23 test matches for Indian cricket team scoring two centuries against Zimbawe both in Nagpur.
Now Das is working in the public sector undertaking NALCO. He is the coach of Odisha Cricket team. Das is married to Trishna Thatal Das and they are blessed with one son and one daughter.