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Monday, November 06, 2006

Dada defies ULFA dadagiri*, scores ton

As Saurav Ganguly & Avishek Jhunjunwala walked back to the pavillion at Guwahati's Nehru Stadium at the end of the 2nd day's play of the Deodhar Trophy encounter between East & North zones, the only thing on their minds must have been the huge score piled up by North in the first innings. In a little over an hour the situation changed dramatically, and by the time the players reached their hotel, cricket had taken a clear back seat.

Within minutes of each other, at about 1840 hrs local time, the Assam capital had been rocked by 3 bomb blasts leaving 15 dead, and at least 30 injured. Not surprisingly, a number of players fearing for their safety, called for the match to be abandoned. It was only after an assurance of safety from the Govt of Assam and reassurance from senior pros including Ganguly that the players relented.

Cricket resumed the next morning, and the few brave hearts who had made it to the ground were well rewarded - they got what they had asked for, and a little more. It was vintage Ganguly at his classical best. By modern cricket standards, it was a patient innings with the 100 coming off only the 191st ball, but it was an innings under pressure - both from a personal as well as a team point of view. Chasing a mammoth 504, East had lost two quick wickets the day before and Ganguly, who is out of the national team badly needed a big score for himself. And that's what he did - three 6's and a dozen 4's - and still undefeated at 118. The big question now is - can he continue with this form and make it back, to where he belongs ?

United Liberation Front of Assam (ULFA) is an insurgent group active in Assam for over 20 years now. They seek independence from India and are not averse to using violent means towards attaining their objective. Though they have not yet claimed responsibility for these blasts, intelligence sources say that ULFA is the most likely group behind the blasts.

* dadagiri - an indian slang for bullyism


omarhaq said...

hmm - ganguly is already talking about the coach and dravid's captaincy....seems like even he feels his time has come.

though the current indian side could really use him in the middle order.

all these new people arn't exactly impressing too much

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