File photo: Abhinav Bindra shows his 2008 Olympic gold medal.© AFP

Abhinav Bindra has revealed that a knock of Rahul Dravid played big role in his 2008 Olympics season that saw the 10-metre air rifle shooter claiming India’s first-ever individual gold in the Games’ history. Bindra also claimed that the innings of Dravid also played a big role in the history of Indian sports. During a Test match between India and Australia at the Sydney Cricket Ground in January 2008, Dravid was batting on 18 when he played 40 consecutive dot balls to get his next run.

Soon after Dravid scored his 19th run, the crowd at SCG gave him a standing ovation and the batter acknowledged it by raising his bat.

“I want to talk about one particular innings of yours which had a big role to play in my career by the way. For me, it was your most important innings because it taught me a lot… It was the game where you scored one run after 40 consecutive dot balls,” said the shooter to Dravid during an interaction in “In the Zone” podcast With Abhinav Bindra.

“It was January 2008. It was the Olympics year. I was there (in Australia) for a fitness camp. And at that point of time in my career I was struggling a little bit to get my first shot off in competition… because I used to be really nervous, my heart rate used to be really high and I used to be impatient sometimes and just go after it quickly and it was mostly disastrous for me.

“So, I watched you in this game on TV. Just showing immense amount of patience for 40 consecutive balls and that taught me so much. So I want to thank you. That innings had a big role to play… in Indian sports history because it helped in that Olympic season,” he added.

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While Bindra applauded Dravid for the knock, the latter said: “I am glad somebody benefitted from that… It was a bit torturous really for lot of the people watching, even for me.”

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