YouTube personality Sahil Khattar will portray former India wicket-keeper Syed Kirmani, nicknamed Kiri bhai, in Kabir Khan's upcoming sports drama, 83. The character poster features the actor mid-action, leaping forward to catch a cricket ball. 83 marks Khattar's first Bollywood film.
According to ESPN Cricinfo, Kirmani replaced Farokh Engineer behind the stumps and eventually played an important role in India's 1983 World Cup win.
In a 2019 interview with Mid-Day, Khattar spoke about how his look helped him bag this role: "Director Kabir Khan felt a bald guy should play a bald guy's [Kirmani] role because they wanted the casting to be as real as possible. I am thankful as because of this, I got an amazing Bollywood debut. There was a time when bald actors didn't get any work in the industry."
Here is the first look
A wall behind the wickets, who never let any ball pass his Golden Gloves!! Presenting Kiri Bhai, the next devil #SyedKirmani!!@RanveerOfficial@issahilkhattar@kabirkhankk@deepikapadukone@Shibasishsarkar@madmantena#SajidNadiadwala@vishinduri@ipritamofficial@FuhSePhantompic.twitter.com/JLZs0RbkTi
" Reliance Entertainment (@RelianceEnt) January 19, 2020
Ranveer Singh will step into the shoes of former Indian skipper Kapil Dev. Dahiya will be seen essaying the role of Roger Binny while Sharma will be seen as Kirti Azad. Patil will be seen enacting the role of his father and former Indian cricketer Sandeep Patil. Bhasin will be playing Sunil Gavaskar. Jiiva will be seen as the top scorer in the final match of the 1983 world cup against West Indies, K Srikkanth. Saleem will play Mohinder Amarnath, Sandhu is Madan Lal, and Sarna will portray Yashpal Sharma.
The actors had trained in Dharamshala for the film with India's former cricketers and renowned coaches earlier in 2019. The team of 83 has also recreated Dev's match-winning innings of 175 runs against Zimbabwe at Tunbridge stadium.
Deepika Padukone, whose new release was Meghna Gulzar's Chhapaak, will play Dev's wife Romi Bhatia. The sports drama will reunite Padukone and Singh onscreen after Sanjay Leela Bhansali's 2018 directorial Padmaavat.
Produced by Madhu Mantena, Vishnu Induri and Khan, and presented by Reliance Entertainment, 83 is slated to release on 10 April.