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Sunday, October 15, 2017

keeping Ashwin out of scheme ? - Smit Patel 99 - Tripura who ??

One may not easily identify this young lad - Gujarat wicketkeeper-batsman Smit Patel moved out  to join the Tripura cricket team. Patel, a winner of the Under-19 World Cup title in 2012, signed for the North East stating "better opportunities available at Agartala".

Tripura, in Northeast India is the third-smallest state in the country.  It  covers 10,491 km2 (4,051 sq mi) and is bordered by Bangladesh,  the Indian states of Assam and Mizoram.  The area of modern 'Tripura' was ruled for several centuries by the Tripuri dynasty. It was the independent princely state of the Tripuri Kingdom under the protectorate of the British Empire which was known as Hill Tippera while the area annexed and ruled directly by British India was known as Tippera District (present Comilla District).  The independent Tripuri Kingdom (or Hill Tippera) joined the newly independent India in 1949. Ethnic strife between the indigenous Tripuri people and the migrant Bengali population due to large influx of Bengali Hindu refugees and settlers from Bangladesh led to tension and scattered violence since its integration into the country of India, but the establishment of an autonomous tribal administrative agency and other strategies have led to peace.

This news was interesting !  -  Power ministers of India’s northeastern states have proposed a power transmission line between Tripura and West Bengal through Bangladesh.  It is reported that this proposal was put forth in a meeting between the ministers at Shillong, Meghalaya.  , Tripura’s Power Minister Manik Dey reportedly told the reporters that - “Tripura’s transmission line is connected to West Bengal via Assam. It passes through hilly areas and forests. As a result, Tripura and its counterparts in the Northeast often suffer from power disruption.” Tripura, south Assam, Mizoram and Manipur would be benefited if a power line connecting Tripura and West Bengal is set up via Bangladesh, he added.

We are reading about Tripura more because it is in Group C of Ranji Trophy 2017-18 relaid format of 4 groups :  the teams in this group are : Andhra Pradesh, Baroda, Madhya Pradesh, Mumbai, Odisha, Tamil Nadu & Tripura.  The group is tough as only the top 2 teams from each group move to QF.  Tamilnadu did not do all that well in the first match against Andhra and now is playing Tripura at home.

Smit, who moved from Gujarat to Tripura last year, was superbly caught by J Kousik off Washington Sundar on 99 on day one while attempting to hit a six. "It feels bad to get out on 99. The ball was there to be hit and I did go. But I don't regret it because I played really well whole day. The one run could have made a difference," he said. Smit used his feet brilliantly against R Ashwin to unsettle the ace Indian offie during his knock. "I didn't give a thought about the name Ashwin. I played the ball. TN bowlers bowled very well. But whoever was bowling, I was playing on the merit of the ball," he added.

After Aussies, the team from Kiwiland is to tour India – play 3 ODIs and 3 T20s.  One dayers are scheduled on  Oct 22 at Wankhede; Oct 25 at Pune and Oct 29 Kanpur; T20s at Delhi on Nov 1; Rajkot Nov4 and Nov 7 at Thiruvananthapuram. Shardul Thakur and Dinesh Karthik have made their way back into the ODI squad for the three matches against New Zealand starting October 22 in Mumbai. Shikhar Dhawan, who had sought leave for the Australia ODIs to be with his ill wife, also returned to the 15-man squad.  KL Rahul, who was in the squad for the ODIs against Australia, was left out. India's frontline spinners in Tests - R Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja - were also not part of the squad which meant the spin trio of Yuzvendra Chahal, Kuldeep Yadav and Axar Patel was retained.  In the pace department, Umesh Yadav and Mohammed Shami were left out from the squad after both of them played only the fourth ODI against Australiain Bengaluru.

The continuous keeping away of ace Ravichandran Ashwin is baffling to say the least ! – the pair of Ashwin and Jadeja have been exceptionally good in Tests and very effective in limited overs format too .. is there something cooking ! – what is the real reason – a player of his calibre cannot be rested for too long and certainly, not against strong opponent like Australia. Is he not our mainstay for the WC 2019 ? Qs and more Qs …. !!

In the Ranji, allrounder Washington Sundar's maiden first-class hundred - 156* off 223 balls - underpinned Tamil Nadu's dominance against Tripura in Chennai. Opening the batting in the absence of M Vijay - who is suffering from a neck spasm - Sundar struck 14 fours and a six to give his team a 74-run first-innings lead at stumps on the second day. He first added 162 for the opening stand with  captain Abhinav Mukund before combining with B Indrajith for an unbroken 152-run stand for the third wicket. Abhinav made 76 off 130 balls - his second successive first-class fifty - while Indrajith stayed unbeaten on 73 off 121 balls. Tripura used seven bowlers with only Joydeep Bhattacharjee and Gurinder Singh finding success. The hosts, ultimately, closed the day at 332 for 2, scoring at over four runs per over.

Earlier, seamer K Vignesh's 4 for 41 helped Tamil Nadu dismiss Tripura for 258 from an overnight 244 for 7. The visitors had lost their last seven wickets for just 55 runs.

With regards – S. Sampathkumar

15th Oct 2017.

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