VINOO MANKAD: Tours: 1946 and 1952. Matches: Six. Wickets: 20. Average: 33.90.
When he arrived in England in 1946 Vinoo Mankad was acknowledged to be one of the leading players in India. By the end of the tour he was regarded as the best left arm spin bowler in the game his vigorous batting being a bonus. Critics raved about his bowling even as batsmen struggled - and the line-up included Len Hutton, Cyril Washbrook, Denis Compton and Wally Hammond - against his pinpoint accuracy, alluring flight and vicious turn. He finished the three-match series - his first - with eleven economical wickets.
Because of an administrative howler Mankad was not selected for the 1952 tour but was pressed into services for the last three Tests of the four-match series. He wasted little time coming up with one of the most famous feats in Indian cricket history - the treble of 72, 184 and five for 196 from 73 overs in a losing cause at Lord's. In the next two matches he was accuracy personified epitomized by his bowling at the Oval where in his first 13 overs he conceded just a single even while picking up his usual quota of wickets.