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News Letter
Wed Apr 24 2002
Issue No: 53

Quicks bowl India to memorable win

Port of Spain happens to be India’s luckiest venue at the Caribbean, and it lived up to that tag on Tuesday. Sourav Ganguly’s Indians registered a 37-run win in the second Test to go 1-0 up in the five-Test series against the West Indies. The home team, who began the day on almost level terms, seemed destined to lose their way after Brian Lara (47) and skipper Carl Hooper (22) were dismissed on the final morning with 149 runs to get. Chris Gayle and Shivnarine Chanderpaul, however, breathed fresh hope into the hearts of their supporters with a 73-run fifth-wicket stand. But Gayle’s dismissal after a patient and solid 52 initiated a collapse that saw five wickets fall for just 38 runs. Chanderpaul was forced to trudge off the field a disappointed man after an unbeaten hand of 67. For India, Javagal Sinath and Ashish Nehra, both of whom claimed three wickets, and Zaheer Khan, who claimed two wickets, bowled their hearts out. VVS Laxman, who made two fifties in the Test, was deservingly named the Man of the Match.

Ganguly terms Trinidad win the sweetest of his career

The win in the second Test that concluded at Port of Spain on Tuesday was India's first in the Caribbean in 26 years. Indian skipper Sourav Ganguly was naturally elated, terming it the best in his 20-Test tenure as captain. "So far, it is my sweetest moment as skipper," said Ganguly. "But the series is not over yet, and it will be better if we go back with a series win."

"We always had a chance," he continued. "We had 312 on the board, they were 131 for two overnight, and we knew we had to get Lara to win the Test. Lara and Hooper's wickets were obviously the key."

Was he worried when Cameron Cuffy and Shivnarine Chanderpaul began to help their team inch towards the target? Not really, Ganguly said. "There was no tension in the end. They were still 40 behind and we just required one wicket. Cuffy batted well, but it's very difficult to get so many runs with a number 11," the Indian skipper reasoned. Ganguly was also full of praise for his three pace bowlers - Javagal Srinath, Ashish Nehra and Zaheer Khan. "They stuck to a line, looked disciplined. Srinath is obviously a class performer every time he walks out to bowl, but Nehra and Zaheer supported him very well," he observed.

Coach John Wright was also quietly jubilant. But he was also keen to iron out the weaknesses in the side. "Looking at this Test match, we should see what we can do better," he said. "We will have a look in Barbados and try and pick the right eleven."

Tendulkar misses his kids on birthday

The little big man of Indian cricket turns 29 today. But sadly, Sachin Tendulkar’s family won’t be around on this most memorable of days. "Anjali had to come along with the two kids, which I didn’t endorse simply because of the distance. And covering such a great distance just for this evening is meaningless," he explained. He admitted that would miss his two kids - Sara and Arjun - especially. But the little master hopes to make up for that by calling his family and kids. The fulfillment of his wish to see India end on the victorious side at Port of Spain might make up for the disappointment of being away from his family. As also would the little celebration that his teammates have planned for him in his room today evening.

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For some, today in 1973 was the biggest event in Indian cricket history - the birth of Sachin Ramesh Tendulkar. A Test cap at 16 and Indian captain at 23, Tendulkar, now 29, has gone on to become arguably the greatest cricketer from India, amassing tons of runs in both forms of the game.

It has finally been done. After 26 years, India have won a Test in the Caribbean, a famous victory that exemplified team spirit and determination. Can they take it one step ahead and pull off a series win? Stay tuned to CricInfo to follow the remaining three Tests and India's mission to come up trumps.

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VVS Laxman
Man of the Match
© CricInfo

After which West Indian cricketer did Sunil Gavaskar name his son?

Previous Question

Which bowler broke Srikkanth's arm during the 1988-89 India-West Indies series?

Answer:Ian Bishop

"So far it is my sweetest moment as skipper But the series is not over yet, and it will be better if we go back with a series win." Sourav Ganguly

"It's very disappointing. Coming into the last day, we really fancied our chances, and it was disappointing how we ended up short." Carl Hooper

"So many of us watch cricket when India plays especially to watch Sachin Tendulkar. Happy Birthday to you, Sachin." KP George

India's win at Port of Spain gave Sourav Ganguly his fourth overseas victory as skipper, the most by any Indian captain.

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