London: Former India captain Sunil Gavaskar was lucky to escape unhurt in a car crash while travelling from Manchester to London on Sunday after the third Test between India and England. The Test ended on Saturday.
According to media reports, Gavaskar, who is part of the Sky Sports commentary team, was seated in a Jaguar with fellow-commentator Mark Nicholas and his close friend Chandresh Patel when he met with the accident.
It was learnt that the legendary opener was sitting on the left side of the rear while Nicholas was sitting beside the driver when a car coming from the opposite end collided with their Jaguar.
Gavaskar’s driver, who had reportedly dozed off, was slow to react on a wet road and a late manoeuvre did avoid a head-on collision but the speeding vehicle slammed onto the other car. It was Gavaskar, who had to shout to get the drowsy driver back to his senses as the others were also fast asleep.
Though the Jaguar was badly damaged, all the passengers left unscathed and the visibly shaken trio later took a train from East Midland Park for London.
It was reported that Gavaskar, who had warned the driver of rash driving in soggy and skiddy conditions, was reading a newspaper when the accident happened while the other two passengers were comfortably sleeping.
“God has saved us. There was torrential rain and our car was being driven very fast. Thankfully, no one was hurt although the accident was very, very scary,” Gavaskar was quoted in media reports.
“I was visibly shaken after the accident,” Gavaskar admitted.
Gavaskar reached his London flat in two hours time after the crash and having left the incident behind is gearing up to take the mike for the fifth and final Test starting August 15.
Gavaskar has been critical of India’s cricketers for their embarrassing innings defeat in the fourth Test at Old Trafford, saying the team showed “no backbone” to fight against a “persistent” England side.
“There was no backbone shown by India,” Gavaskar had told BBC Radio’s Test Match Special.