|Full name||Nariman Jamshedji Contractor|
7 March 1934 |
Godhra, Gujarat, India
|Batting style||Left-hand bat|
|Bowling style||Right-arm medium|
|Test debut||2 December 1955 v New Zealand|
|Last Test||7 March 1962 v West Indies|
|Source: ESPNcricinfo, 10 January 2013|
Nariman Jamshedji "Nari" Contractor pronunciation (help·info) (born 7 March 1934, Godhra, Gujarat) is a former cricket player. He was a left-handed opening batsman whose international career was ended abruptly by a serious injury in 1962.
Contractor had a fortuitous beginning to his first-class career, when he was called up to replace the Gujarat captain who was injured on the morning of the match. Contractor scored hundreds in both innings of his debut, becoming the second man after Arthur Morris to do so.
At Lord's in 1959, he had two ribs broken early in the first innings by Brian Statham, despite which he scored 81. Later in the year, his 74 in the second innings at Kanpur was crucial in India winning its first Test against Australia. This innings ended when he pulled Alan Davidson, who was bowling left-arm spin at the time. Neil Harvey at short leg ducked and turned, but the ball got stuck between his legs.
Contractor led India to a series win against England in 1961–62 and captained the side to West Indies the same season. There, in the match against Barbados, his attention was momentarily distracted as he faced Charlie Griffith: "It was as Griffith was to deliver the fourth ball of his second over that somebody opened a window in the pavilion. There were no sight screen at that time and my 100 per cent concentration wasn’t on that delivery. I saw it just inches away before it hit me. But it isn’t true that I ducked." Contractor took a blow at the back of his skull and was unconscious for six days, requiring a blood transfusion, for which West Indies captain Frank Worrell was the first to donate his blood. Contractor's life was saved but his international career was abruptly ended as a result. In a recent interview, he mentioned as his only regret that he wanted play just one Test after the injury, but people did not want him to.
It should be noted that at the time Nari Contractor was seriously injured, cricket batsmen did not wear helmets. They do now.
During his playing days, Contractor was considered a glamour boy of Indian cricket. In a 2012 interview with Simi Garewal, Tamil Nadu chief minister Jayalalithaa stated that as a school girl she had a crush on Contractor.
- Arzan Sam Wadia, "Nari Contractor: ‘I don’t mind living it all over again’", Parsi Khabar, 7 March 2009.
- Murzello, Clayton (20 March 2012). "50 years on, Nari recalls near fatal blow". Mid-Day. Retrieved 28 November 2014.
- A. C. de Silva, "Frank Worrell donated blood to save Indian Nari Contractor's life", Sunday Observer (Sri Lanka), 3 January 2010.
- C.K. Nayudu Lifetime Achievement Award for Durrani Retrieved 26 March 2014.