Laxmipathy Balaji donned the Indian jersey in only a handful of games but became a crowd favorite for his lively presence on the field and utmost dedication to the game. He catapulted into the limelight during the 2004 tour of Pakistan where he was pivotal to India’s victories in the Test and ODI series.
Reflecting on the iconic Pakistan-India clashes in that period, Balaji’s former teammate Ashish Nehra believes the right-arm pacer was perhaps more famous than Imran Khan in the 2004 tour. Nehra’s assessment takes into account the fact that there was a certain buzz in the stadium whenever Balaji was in the middle of the action.
"In the dressing room, Irfan can give you more stories, the only thing I remember is Laxmipathy Balaji on that particular tour. Maybe that time he was more popular than Imran Khan," Nehra claimed.