Contribution of Indian soldiers during WWI to be recognized with a special match in England
At the start of the match, both the English and Indian captains Virat Kohli and Joe Root wore the poppy.
Updated - Sep 9, 2018 5:06 pm
The contribution of Indian soldiers in the First World War will be recognized in England today. A special match has been organized that will be played on the outfield of The Oval during the lunch on Day 3 of the ongoing 5th Test match between England and India. The Royal British Legion will join forces with Surrey CCC for the game.
There is a full day of activity planned as per BBC Test Match Special, it includes a match played at the Western Front between the Royal Manchester Regiment and the Sikh Regiment of the Indian Army. Members of both the teams can already be spotted in the stands and have been getting a lot of attention.
At the start of the match, both the English and Indian captains Virat Kohli and Joe Root wore the khadi poppy which a fabric that was made popular by the Father of the nation, Mahatma Gandhi. It is a limited-edition work and will be later distributed among the members of the British Asian community.
As far as the Indian Army’s contribution in the World War I is concerned, over a million troops were a part of the forces. They were in large numbers deployed in European, Mediterranean and the Middle East parts of the war. As per Wikipedia from the Indians who were serving then, 62,000 lost their lives and another 67,000 were wounded.
Though not officially, the effort of the Indian Army has been spoken of by those who were also a part of it. Field-Marshal Sir Claude Auchinleck who was the Commander-in-Chief of the Indian Army from 1942 said: “couldn’t have come through both wars [World War I and II] if they hadn’t had the Indian Army.”
The ongoing 5th Test
Though it is a dead rubber, both the teams have put up a real fight. After day 1 it was the Indian team that held the upper hand having dismissed the English top and middle order cheaply. On the back of Jos Buttler’s effort, the hosts made a comeback on day 2 and to such effect that after bowling well at the start have a great chance of managing a substantial lead in the first innings.