We had it all when we had 'The Wall': Rahul Dravid turns 47; cricket fraternity extends wishes

Former India captain Rahul Dravid on Saturday turned 47 and the cricket fraternity took to social media to extended wishes to one of the most decorated cricketers of all times.

Dravid, popularly known as 'The Wall', is still regarded as one of the best No.3 batsmen that India ever produced in Test cricket. The right-handed batsman, who made his debut for India in 1996 at Lord's, went on to play 164 Tests, 334 ODIs and 1 T20I in an illustrious career which spanned for over 16 years.

"From my understanding, I thought grinding only happens in the kitchen in the mixer grinder, but Dravid taught one can grind on the cricket pitch as well. We had it all when we had the Wall !#HappyBirthdayRahulDravid," Virender Sehwag bought his witty side to extend birthday greetings.

V.V.S. Laxman also wished Dravid and tweeted: "Wishing my good friend Rahul Dravid a very special birthday and a wonderful year filled with love, happiness, and prosperity."

Even Mohammad Kaif wished Dravid. "Inspiration. Role Model. Legend. Wishing the great man , Rahul Dravid a very happy birthday #HappyBirthdayRahulDravid," tweeted Mohammad Kaif.

India middle-order batsman Ajinkya Rahane on Friday wished Rahul Dravid a happy birthday and called him a 'guiding light'. "My inspiration...Always looked up to him...Made my International debut alongside him...Always a guiding light and a role model to me... He's someone whom I truly treasure. Wish Rahul Bhai a very happy birthday," Rahane tweeted.

Wicket-keeper batsman Wriddhiman Saha also wished Dravid and tweeted: "Wishing #RahulDravid a very Happy Birthday! An inspiration for many..! Have a wonderful year ahead! #TheWall #HappyBirthdayRahulDravid".

Even BCCI extended greetings to Dravid. BCCI decided to wish Dravid by highlighting his ODI credentials and shared the video of his 153-run knock against New Zealand in 1999 in Hyderabad. The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) relived the batsman's 153-run knock against New Zealand in an ODI match.

The BCCI posted a video of Dravid's knock and captioned the post as--"Wishing The Wall - Rahul Dravid a very Happy Birthday. His exploits in Test cricket are well known but we thought we would relive one of his knocks in ODIs against New Zealand. #HappyBirthdayRahulDravid".

Even IPL franchise Rajasthan Royals wished Dravid. In a tweet the IPL franchise said: "20 years of pure blockbuster performances! Happy Birthday, legend."

Dravid knock of 153 against the Kiwis in 1999 at Hyderabad included 15 fours and two sixes. He was involved in a 331-run partnership with Sachin Tendulkar, enabling the side to post a total of 376/2 in the allotted fifty overs. India went on to register a win by 174 runs in the match.

Dravid is the only player to be involved in two 300-plus ODI partnerships. He played 164 Tests, 344 ODIs and one T20I for India. He finally announced his retirement from international cricket in March 2012. With 210 catches, the former Indian captain also holds the record for the most number of catches by a non-wicketkeeper in Tests. Dravid finished his career with 48 international centuries. He has now taken up the role of coaching the junior Indian sides (India U-19, India A), and is also the head of the National Cricket Academy (NCA).

(Inputs from Agencies)

Also Read: As Rahul Dravid turns 47, here's a look at his finest knocks in Tests!