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Kapil Dev Says He Was a Better Athlete Than Richard Hadlee, Iam Botham and Imran Khan Put Together

Kapil Dev believes he was a better athelete than fellow all-rounders Richard Hadlee, Imran Khan and Ian Botham but he wouldn't class himself above them based on cricketing ability.

Cricketnext Staff |July 31, 2020, 3:36 PM IST
Kapil Dev Says He Was a Better Athlete Than Richard Hadlee, Iam Botham and Imran Khan Put Together

Former India captain Kapil Dev believes he was a better athelete than fellow all-rounders Richard Hadlee, Imran Khan and Ian Botham but he wouldn't class himself above them based on cricketing ability.

Dev further added that Hadlee was the best bowler among all four of them and that Imran, while not the most natural athelete, worked very hard on his game.

"I wouldn’t say I was the greatest, but I was a better athlete than all three put together," Kapil told former India cricketer and current head coach of Indian women’s team WV Raman on Inside Out podcast.

"The best bowling was Richard Hadlee’s - he was like a computer among the four of us. I wouldn’t say Imran Khan was the best athlete or the most natural, but he was the most hardworking player we’ve seen.

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"When he started out, he looked like an ordinary bowler, but then he became a very hardworking fast bowler and he learned by himself. And then he worked on his batting as well."

Dev further paid tribute to Botham as a 'true all-rounder', saying he could win matches single-handedly. He also had a word of praise for Imran's leadership skills.

"Ian Botham was a true all-rounder - in given conditions, he could win a match on his own. I wouldn’t say Hadlee was the best batsman.

"Botham could do damage to the opposition both with bat [and ball]. Imran could run through the [opposition] team, but his ability as a leader was far better. To control the Pakistan team, he had a challenge."

Dev played 356 international matches for India, picking 687 wickets and scoring a total of 9,031 runs.

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