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News Letter
Fri Apr 26 2002
Issue No: 54

India to rest six top players for tour match against Busta XI

The Port of Spain victory has given India a chance to experiment in their three-day tour match against a Busta XI side, an advantage they rarely have while touring abroad. Six top players – Sourav Ganguly, Sachin Tendulkar, Rahul Dravid, Javagal Srinath, Zaheer Khan and Ashish Nehra – are being rested for the match, their performances thus far in the series assuring the team management of their form. VVS Laxman, who has also been in good nick, nevertheless finds himself not only in the side but captaining it. All three spinners – Sarandeep Singh, Harbhajan Singh and Anil Kumble – will play, as will Wasim Jaffer and Dinesh Mongia. Their rivals are a team of Test hopefuls, with captain Ridley Jacobs almost sure to replace Junior Murray in the side at Bridgetown. Darren Ganga, Wavell and Ryan Hinds, Dinanath Ramnarine and Pedro Collins all stand a shot of getting back into the Test side, and the teams, being fairly evenly matched, should throw up a good contest.

Wadekar, Bedi praise victorious Indian team

The two captains who led India to her previous two Test wins in the Caribbean were quick to praise Sourav Ganguly’s men for winning the second Test against the West Indies at Port of Spain. "It is a great feeling. They really fought well," Ajit Wadekar, the skipper of the history-making Indian team in 1971, said.

Wadekar's team had also won the second of five Tests, also played on that occasion at Port of Spain. "They showed great aggression. I could see that in the eyes of (skipper) Sourav Ganguly," he observed. Talking of the Indian skipper, Wadekar said, "He’s got the right attitude. You have to be aggressive, and Ganguly is an aggressive captain. I thought he handled his bowlers pretty well."

Meanwhile, Bishan Singh Bedi, who led India to another famous win at the same ground in 1976, was also jubilant. "It is absolutely fantastic. It was a real test for Indian cricket, and they came out triumphant," he said. But he then went on to warn Ganguly against becoming too defensive in the upcoming matches.

"There is no doubt we are a better side, but we've got to prove it. This was a brilliant win, coming from a good team effort. But there are three Tests to go. We must resist the temptation of sitting on the lead, as we did in 1971. India could have won two more Tests in 1971 had we played our natural attacking game after winning the second Test match," the legendary left-arm spinner said.

"I hope Ganguly does not follow the same pattern. It could be disastrous with the West Indies going all out on faster pitches in the remaining three Tests," Bedi added.

Detain Gavaskar!

It was a strange reception that Sunil Gavaskar got on arriving at Port of Spain. A senior official from the immigration department at the airport was quick to insist that the little master be detained. The reason? Well, how could he and his cricket-loving colleagues let the man who took 13 Test centuries off their famed pace quartet of yesteryear go without even an autograph? Their reverence for the great man is understandable when one considers that it was at the Queen’s Park Oval that the Gavaskar legend began. As a 21-year-old debutant opener, Gavaskar made two 65s, the second unbeaten, and also scored the runs that secured India its first win in the Caribbean. That was but the beginning of a long love-affair with a ground that was to see him score 793 runs there at 99.12 with four hundreds and two fifties in nine innings.

  • In the fitness of things, a feature on fitness. Check out the Rasna Health Check. Click Here
  • Off-spinning great Erapalli Prasanna calls the Port of Spain a good plan well-executed. Click Here
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VK Ramaswamy, who along with Piloo Reporter, stood in the first Test featuring neutral umpires, was born on this day in 1945 in Chennai. After making his first-class umpiring debut in 1973, Ramaswamy went on stand in 26 Tests and 45 one-dayers.

The job, in spite of India's victory at Trinidad, is only half done. A series win outside the subcontinent after a 16-year drought still awaits, and India must shun defensive play for aggression in the remaining Tests to win by a good margin. Keep coming back to to follow all the action.

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Sunil Gavaskar
"Detained" at Port of Spain
© CricInfo

Name the famous Indian spinner who currently resides in Trinidad?

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

Answer:Rohan Kanhai

"I believe that whatever happened was meant to be. You can't read too much into it. If we were supposed to win today, obviously we would have won." Carl Hooper

"The boys tried hard, and we can still pull it back. There are still three Test matches to be played and, if anything, this game confirms that we are very capable of beating this team." Roger Harper

"Incompetent umpires should be kicked out of the panel. Poor umpiring decisions can have a disastrous effect on players' careers and subsequently the game." Mohammed

The Queen’s Park Oval has now hosted more Indian Test wins - three- than any other venue abroad.

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