Posts Tagged ‘sourav ganguly’
Finally a series win in Test cricket against the Aussies. Well done to the entire team. My wish for the last match of the Fab4 together ending on a winning note was fulfilled.
Dhoni is turning out to be the proverbial man with a Midas touch. Three wins in three tests, a major ODI tournament in Australia and the 20/20 World Cup. I had mentioned in an earlier post that he remains unruffled under pressure. The last day of this test match, he showed himself as a good leader as well by offering Ganguly to lead the team for a few overs once Australia were nine down and then insisting that former-captain Kumble lift the Border-Gavaskar Trophy with him. Humility and respect are two qualities of a good leader.
So whats left?
Saying so long to Dada.
Thank you for all the great memories, and there have been great many. But the most cherished one would still have to be that summer evening in our central Kolkata flat, the chest swelling with parochial pride as Ganguly – derided as the zonal selection and who got a chance to play only due to Manjrekar’s injury – stroked one silken drive after another on the off-side. India had lost the first test, and were under a bit of pressure in the second match at Lords, having lost one opener cheaply. In came Ganguly, who had already taken a few wickets while bowling, but certainly sent out by Azhar as a lamb for the slaughter in the fading lights. Not only did he survive that evening, but went from strength to strength the next day.The rest as they say, is history.
There were two regrets that day: one, I could not watch Ganguly get to his century live. Whichever channel was covering the test had to switch to Euro’96 action during the time he got his century. And two, that day I was hoping India would create a record with a second debutant scoring a century, but Rahul Dravid fell at 95.
(another tribute here).
In the current Indian test team playing against Australia, we have two players who made their debut at the same time (and quite spectacular ones at that); both subsequently went on to be integral parts of the Indian middle-order and played important roles in the resurgence of Indian cricket in the post-Azhar match-fixing era, and both went on to captain the Indian team.
However, over the last few years, the batting form of both players are supposed to have declined, along with that of two other important middle-order players (dubbed together fancifully as the ‘Fab Four’.) Such is the decline that there has been vociferous calls for these ageing players to step down voluntarily and make way for young blood.
Fair enough, after all the young blood has worked wonders for India at the T20 and ODI levels. Thus, one of these two batsmen has decided to call it a day, and will be retiring at the end of the current test series.
But lets have a quick statistical look at the decline: here is player 1′s record in the last two years (Matches-Runs-Highest-Score-Average-Strike Rate-100s-50s): 23 -1842-239-47.23-59.07-4-9.
Here is player #2 during the same period: 23-1292-129-33.12-40.40-2-7.
So, about six hundred more runs, average of 47 versus 33 (even at a higher strike rate of 59 versus 40), two more centuries and half centuries for one player.
Now guess which player is retiring ?
: Even though the said player is retiring voluntarily, make no mistakes that the circumstances forcing his decision were anything but voluntary.
Speechless, we simply sit and shake our head in dismay:
(more on the Knight Riders here)
The comments section at the Youtube host site provides a good competition for Rediff. Enjoy gems such as:
This ad-vid is awesome!!! Ignoring the stupid commentaries that underestimate our king, I hope that to these boys all turns into gold. Is so sweet the determination with which he promotes the team.
PS – if someone can explain what this video has to do with cricket, Kolkata or even Bollywood, I will be much obliged.
I am positively excited; brimming – nay, overflowing – with anticipation and gutted by the intolerably long wait. I am figuratively salivating …………
Naysayers who frown upon the cattle-trade nature of the IPL player auctions will find plenty wrong with this picture. Snobs will deride the the golden yellow helmet as tacky. But little they do they realize the visual symbolism of a morphed image of a viking helmet with a cricket grill. It is exactly what provides confidence that the home team will ‘unleash…power, tear down …rivals’, ‘win every war in the battlefield’ , ‘fight for glory’ and other such amazing stuff.
The same spoil-sports may even complain about the overly ‘Flash’y website, but once you have downloaded the team anthem, a stirring composition in Bengali-Hindi-English combined, extolling you to ‘korbo, lorbo, jeetbo re’, how can it not stir the those long-dormant Robindrosongeet-suppressed Bangali-passions? If only we had this slogan 30 years ago, Kolkata would have been far ahead of the game.
And if all that doesn’t get your adrenalin pumping and rushing to the nearest store to get your own autographed helmet while singing ‘lorbo, jeetbo’ at the top of your voice, there is no way you can evade the charms of the lovable mascot, ‘Hoog Lee’! Yes a spectacularly genius piece of witty nomenclature from some enterprising copywriter. As SRK sez:”not Bruce Lee, not Brett Lee, but better than all the Lees“. Oh yeah !
Yessireee, along with jhalmuri, phuckka and the Campari mutton roll, add the Knight Riders to the irresistible delights of Kolkata. Lucky me, I get to be in Kolkata for their opener on the 20th April !!
Errr….is that John Buchanan sniggering ? How dare he……..