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Parsis: The Zoroastrians of India Pakistan and The World

Boman Irani to play Farokh Engineer in Ranveer Singh starrer ’83

Both the fraternity of Indian cricket fans as well as that of Bollywood lovers are keenly awaiting the arrival of the movie ’83 on the silver screen. This movie, based on Indian cricket team’s memorable triumph in the 1983 cricket World Cup, will have the current Bollywood heartthrob Ranveer Singh essaying the role of Indian cricket legend and captain of that victorious team, Kapil Dev.

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The cast to play the entire Indian team has been finalised and the actors have appeared together on various occasions. But now, a new name has joined the group and he is bound to make the prospect of the movie even more appealing to the fans. According to movie critic Taran Adarsh, Boman Irani, known for playing memorable roles in movies such as ‘Munnabhai MBBS’ and ‘3 Idiots,’ would play the flamboyant former Indian wicketkeeper and batsman Farokh Engineer.

Irani playing Engineer makes sense as both men belong to the Parsi community. The former cricketer had been a commentator for BBC during the 1983 World Cup. His character would, perhaps, provide a unique vantage point to India’s journey to the title.

This movie, which is slated for release on April 10, 2020, is being produced by Sajid Nadiadwala and Madhu Mantena as well as the wife of the lead star and leading Bollywood actress Deepika Padukone. The director of the movie is Kabir Khan.

Apart from Ranveer Singh, other actors in this cinematic adaptation of Indian cricket team’s triumph include Deepika herself as Kapil Dev’s wife Romi Bhatia, Tahir Raj Bhasin as Sunil Gavaskar, Saqib Saleem as Mohinder Amarnath and Sahil Khattar as Syed Kirmani.

Other prominent actors in the movie are Pankaj Tripathi as Indian team’s PR manager Man Singh, Jiiva as Krishnamachari Srikanth, Ammy Virk as Balwinder Singh Sandhu, Harry Sandhu as Madan Lal, Chirag Patil as Sandeep Patil, Jatin Sarna as Yashpal Sharma and Adinath Kothare as Dilip Vengasarkar.

While Farokh Engineer wasn’t part of the team that won the 1983 World Cup, his colourful personality would ensure that Irani has a lot to play with in the movie. Before retiring from the game, Engineer enjoyed considerable success as wicketkeeper-batsman in the Indian side.

He played 46 Tests and scored 2611 runs at an average of 31.08. Many of his runs came while opening the innings. The last Parsi cricketer to represent India, Engineer scored two hundreds including a famous one against West Indies at Chennai (then Madras) in the 1966/67 season where he scored 94 runs in the first session itself.

As wicket-keeper, Engineer effected 16 stumpings and took 66 catches. He also holds the distinction of being the first Indian to be chosen as a brand ambassador for Brylcreem and therefore become the first Indian ‘Brylcreem boy.’ Certainly, most fans can’t wait to see Boman Irani bring the character of young Engineer alive.