Dilip Doshi

 

Indian spinner Dilip Doshi featured for Nottinghamshire during the 1970s before later playing Tests and One Day Internationals for his country.

Dilip Rasiklal Doshi was born in Rajkot on 22 December 1947.  Bowling slow left arm, he made his First-Class debut in India in 1968 and appeared regularly for Bengal in the Ranji Trophy and for East Zone in the Duleep Trophy.  His first experience of English cricket was for Sussex Second Eleven in 1972 and in the following year he joined Nottinghamshire. 

His appearances with Nottinghamshire were restricted by the prevailing regulations regarding overseas players in English cricket during the 1970s.  During the 1973 and 1974 seasons, Doshi played for Notts Seconds, taking 77 wickets in 17 games across the two seasons.  He made his English First-Class debut for Nottinghamshire against the West Indian touring team at Trent Bridge in 1973 but he was not qualified to play in County Championship matches and so his First-Class appearances were restricted to five games against the Universities and the international tourists. 

Doshi was not retained by the County for the 1975 season but he was re-signed for 1977 and 1978.  Changes to the rules on overseas players meant that counties could now field two such players and so Doshi appeared alongside South African Clive Rice in the Nottinghamshire side for much of 1977.  He made his Championship debut against Northamptonshire in May and played in 25 First-Class matches, claiming 82 wickets and was awarded his County cap. 

In 1978, his appearances were restricted following the signing of Richard Hadlee; but he managed 14 First-Class starts with 57 wickets, plus a further seven games in List-A cricket. Doshi was not re-engaged for the following season, with Rice and Hadlee taking the overseas berths and Eddie Hemmings and Mike Bore arriving from other counties to fill the spinner’s role. 

In four seasons with Notts, Doshi took 157 wickets in 44 First-Class outings.  His best Championship bowling came in July 1978 in the final county match played at the Ransome and Marles ground in Newark, when he took 6-67 in Worcestershire’s first innings and completed a 10 wicket haul in the match with 4-69 in the second. 

Doshi returned to domestic cricket in India and a year later he was called into the Indian team.  He might have played international cricket before but Bishan Singh Bedi had a firm grip on the left arm spinner’s role in the Indian side.  On Bedi’s retirement, Doshi was selected to play in all six Tests on home turf against Australia in 1979/80 and he became a fixture in the Indian side until 1983.  He played 33 Tests, taking 114 wickets and is one of just four bowlers in Test history who played their first Test after the age of 30, yet went on to take more than 100 wickets.  Doshi also played in 15 One Day Internationals for India. 

Dilip Doshi returned to English cricket as one of Warwickshire’s overseas stars in 1980 and 1981 and continued to play in India before retiring in 1986.  He subsequently became successful in business in his home country.  His son Nayan, born in Nottingham during Dilip’s stint with Nottinghamshire, was also a cricketer playing for Saurashtra and briefly for a couple of IPL franchises in India and appearing in English cricket for Surrey and Derbyshire. 

 

May 2020