Interview With Kapil Dev – Life Lessons at Innov8 Coworking!


Interview with Kapil Dev & Ritesh Malik (Q&A at Innov8)


Kapil Dev is an Indian cricketer who captained the Indian National Cricket Team 
to its maiden World Cup Trophy in 1983.

Padma Shri (1982) | Padma Bhushan (1991). 
Indian Cricketer of the Century (2002)
International Cricket Council’s Hall of Fame (2010)

1. How were you able to manage the team as a young leader. Can young entrepreneurs motivate their senior members?

The first rule is to know yourself, and the second one is to never lie to yourself. Whether you’re an entrepreneur or a CEO, you should never let ego come in the way.

You need to make decisions but always remember to respect your seniors. Their experience will always help you in your life and business. A leader is someone who can handle both the young and the old.

Kapil Dev and Ritesh Malik

2. Despite being the recipient of India’s Top Civilian Award i.e. The Padma Bhusan, How do you manage to stay humble?

People usually forget their roots. I think one should enjoy the award at the moment it’s happening.

For Example – If you ever visit my house, all my cricketing valuables from bats, old photographs to trophies are neatly tucked away in a small corner of my house which hardly covers 5% of the total space in my house. The rest of the 95 % of my house has nothing related to cricket.

What this means is that one should cherish the memories but also move on from their glory days.

In an interview with Mr Bachchan, he asked me to about my world record at the time, but today that record has no meaning. However, in but in the moment, I still would have died for every run and every wicket for my country.

Therefore, if you don’t move on, you will always be stuck in a place where you will never succeed. You have to look in the future, not reminisce in the past. What matters is what we can tomorrow. What can we give to our future generations?

3. How did you effectively manage stress despite playing for the country at such a large platform?

Have you ever had stress while doing something that you love? Have you ever had stress when you fell in love? Stress only occurs when you do something that you don’t enjoy. Stress only occurs when our abilities don’t match the expectations of our dreams.

Also, what do you think is important – Skill or Will? The answer is will. We can achieve and fulfil our dreams if we have strong determination.

If you think someone worth 100cr was an overnight success, it’s a mistake! To succeed, you don’t have to focus on the results but rather your current work.

I love what Sunil Gavaskar once said, he said that to score a century, one has to start by scoring 10 runs. One has to attain small steps in order to score a century. So, if you want to reach somewhere, focus on the work that you are doing today.

4. Which was your favourite team to beat at the time?

At the time, West Indies was a huge team. If we had a match against West Indies tomorrow, we would wake up about 3-4 times in the night in sheer terror.

My main aim was to always get Richard’s wicket. Also, one must always respect the opponent until one gets into the ground. Once you land on the ground, you have to only focus on winning.

5. How did you feel when a fellow cricket i.e. Imran Khan become the Pakistani Prime Minister?

Imran was a great fellow cricketer. We always felt good after hearing he was the new Prime Minister. I feel, whatever his policies or decisions maybe, but as fellow cricketers, hats off to him for achieving such a feat.

6. Your 175 knock against Zimbabwe was one the best innings in your career, However, it wasn’t broadcasted due to a BBC strike. How do you feel about it when you look back now?

I believe there are certain days that God carefully curates for you. I think that day was made for me. I hope you find such days that are made for you too.

During the midway of my 175 innings, I realised that it was my day.

There will be a day when you might sit in front of the computer and you get ideas. If you do, don’t leave the office that day, just work because that day is meant for you. If it is your day, don’t let it go.

7. You must have met people from different walks of life, what is one thing which makes Indian entrepreneurs different from other world entrepreneurs?

I believe that self-belief among Indian entrepreneurs has increased throughout the last 30 years. But, we still have to go a long way. 90% of us are trying to prove each other incorrect. That is a sad waste of time and resources. Stop doing that!

Look at other people, but don’t forget yourself. I feel Europeans and Americans don’t have an inflated ego like Indians. They can be honest to your face and say that their boss is a difficult individual but his work is excellent.

This made me realise that one should never mix character and work together.

We need to learn to say, “I like the company of this individual but I cannot work with him” Lastly if you can – Work in India, help India rather than moving abroad.

8. Any thoughts on the famous 1983 catch you took in the World Cup Final?

If I ask you right now about how you felt when you gave your class 10th examinations? Would you remember?

The same goes for me. I took the catch and at the time, it was a daily routine for me. It was a reflex and the only way to prepare for reflexive actions is to just practice day in and day out.

9. What would you have been if not a cricketer?

Should I answer this seriously or joke around. Haha, I would probably be tea-seller and would have gone on to become the Indian Prime Minister.

What this means is that I have never thought to abut such silly questions. Even as a little kid, I knew nothing apart from cricket. There was a time when I was selected to play Ranji Trophy matches, even at the time, I couldn’t name any of the Indian Players of the National Cricket team.

Funnily, in another incident, a lady came to my house and asked me to coach her child as a potential cricketer. She also mentioned that he knew each and everything about cricket – from the players to their stats. My reaction to the lady’s statement was “if he knows this much about cricket, make him ‘Harsha Bhogle’ not a cricketer”.

10. How did you acquire and manage new skills after the end of your cricketing career?

I would say to learn from the people around you. Learn from your CEO and even your colleagues. I got this lesson quite a while back when someone said to me “keep your eyes and ears open even during sleeping.” This helped me with all my future initiatives.


PumpKart CEO (KS Bhatia) on Kapil Dev and Ritesh Malik:
I am grateful to be graced by the present of these two legends. Even my kids are fans of 
both Ritesh Malik and Kapil Dev. They were excited to find out that I was invited to 
Innov8 Coworking for a fireside chat. That is the kind of relationship I have 
with both of them. 

Dr Ritesh Malik (Founder – Innov8 Coworking) 
His Opinions on Budget 2019
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KS Bhatia (Founder,CEO - PumpKart)
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