On this day in 2001, two of the finest Indian batters in the history of cricket — Rahul Dravid and VVS Laxman — created historic, orchestrating a partnership of 376 runs, completing a historic comeback against Australia at the iconic Eden Gardens stadium. Even today, the tales of the duo’s heroics with the bat are celebrated in ever nook and corner of the country. On the 22nd anniversary of the occasion, former India cricketer Hemang Badani shared an unheard tale from the match that sums up how big a comeback it was from Laxman and Dravid.

Dravid and Laxman walked onto the pitch on March 14, 2001, with India’s score reading 254/9 against Australia. The duo remained unbeaten throughout the day as India’s score at stumps read 589/4.

Laxman eventually made a total of 281 runs from 452 balls whil Dravid contributed 180 runs from 353 balls.

Badani, on Twitter, revealed that a comeback wasn’t expected from the Indian team, and hence, their suitcases were packed and sent to the airport.

“Not many know that at the end of day 3 we had packed our suitcases, they were to be taken straight to airport and the team were to go straight to the airport from ground. And then these two batted like magicians without losing a wicket the entire day.

“When we got back to the hotel we didn’t have our suitcases and were stuck with our match gear and tracks until about 9 pm or so. Lot of us ate dinner at the hotel restaurant in our whites,” Badani revealed on Twitter.

Australia had enforced follow-on on the Indian team. Despite that, the hosts went on to beat the tourists by 171 runs in the match.

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