‘His Contribution To Indian Cricket Has Been Immense And Will Never Be Forgotten’ Says Anjum Chopra

Legendary Coach Tarak Sinha
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The news of legendary cricket coach Tarak Sinha’s death in November of last year at the age of 71 shocked the whole Indian cricket community. Sinha was a father figure to all of his wards, having founded and run the well-known and successful Sonnet Cricket Club in Delhi since 1969. Multiple athletes who went on to play for state teams and national Indian teams were honed and polished by the great coach.

Sinha taught players such as Surinder Khanna, Manoj Prabhakar, Ajay Sharma, Anjum Chopra, Ashish Nehra, Aakash Chopra, Atul Wassan, Shikhar Dhawan, and Rishabh Pant. Sinha, who was working at the University of Delhi’s PGDAV college when he founded the Sonnet club, earned the nickname ‘Ustaadji’ from his pupils and others over time.

Former India captain Anjum Chopra, one of his most famous wards, was a guest on Times of India’s sports podcast Sportscast recently and recalled Tarak Sinha’s extraordinary contribution to Indian cricket, echoing the sentiment that Sinha was more than just a coach – he was a guardian, who understood what it takes to handle talented youngsters who are also, in many ways, just regular kids.

“All the words which you used to describe Tarak sir, he was everything – at least to me and I am sure, whether it is to Rishabh Pant or Aakash Chopra or Ashish Nehra – he was that. His contribution to me as a cricketer, to me as a human being to becoming an all-rounded sportsperson, his contribution has been immense and it will never be forgotten.

Just the other day we were having a chat with a group of club cricketers and every word that we spoke, every line that we shared had Sir’s name in it. His contribution can never be taken away, ” on TOI Sportscast, Anjum Chopra stated.

From 2001 to 2002, Sinha was the coach of the Indian senior women’s cricket team. Anjum Chopra had recently taken over as captain of the squad at the time. Anjum, who is presently working as a commentator for IPL 2022, remembers Sinha from India’s 2002 tour of South Africa when the Indian team won a historic one-off Test.

“I was the captain of the Indian team in South Africa, where we won the first Test series. That was in 2002 when I was appointed captain for the first time. I needed to make a couple of tactical judgments. Of course, the late Mr. Tarak Sinha, the Indian team’s coach, was consulted. It was an excellent team effort. As the team’s coach, he led from the front as a leader.

He gave me all of the confidence and freedom I needed to make those decisions. It just worked out perfectly for us. We had never scored 400 runs in a Test match before, and we had never won anything outside of India, so everything came together perfectly and we won. A few moments like this are always remembered in a positive light.” On TOI Sportscast, Anjum Chopra added.

Tarak Sinha taught players throughout decades and had a significant impact on the lives of many cricketers. In 2018, he was honored with the prestigious Dronacharya award for his years of coaching work.

“If we are able to do honor to his legacy and carry it forward, the current generation or the generation after that may not recognize him as a person, but our goal is to perform such outstanding work that his work is carried forward. The name, as well as the heritage, must be preserved. In Indian cricket, he (Tarak Sinha) was that sort of influence; he understood how to get the best out of people.” On TOI Sportscast, Anjum Chopra added.

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