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Thursday, May 10, 2018

all-rounders of 1980s ~ Beefy's charity spent only on his daughter !!!


He walked in during the first time-out, with Mumbai 62 for 2 in nine overs, and soon hit a six and three fours off wristspinners Kuldeep Yadav and Piyush Chawla. Ishan  Kishan raced to 21 off 9 balls, and played an innings long to remember making 62 of mere 21 balls.

Rajasthan Royals kept their tournament alive with an astute defence of 158 engineered by spinners K Gowtham and Ish Sodhi, who took a combined 3 for 25 in seven overs even as KL Rahul made a skillful unbeaten 95. Royals had elected to bat on an evening where the temperatures came close to 41 degrees Celsius, conditions that became more and more impactful through the evening and made scoring runs progressively tougher.  Yesterday it was pathetic and meek surrender by KKR – Cricinfo stats reveals that it  has been 1128 days since Kolkata Knight Riders last beat Mumbai Indians, and that streak could continue until 2019 after the visitors destroyed their hosts by 102 runs at Eden Gardens. The result took Mumbai into the top four for the first time this IPL season, in firm contention for a playoff spot. KKR, on the other hand, slid to fifth after spending considerable time in the top half of the league.
Mumbai were powered by Ishan Kishan's blazing half-century before their bowlers applied an age-old tactic of bowling short to dismember the KKR batting line-up. Chasing 211, KKR were all out for their lowest total at home - 108; while Mumbai completed their second largest victory in terms of runs. For the third year in a row, Mumbai beat KKR both home and away during the league phase of the IPL.

For those who still remember that Cricket could be more than the entertaining IPL – way back in Feb 1980 occurred the Golden Jubilee test at Mumbai  – India captained by the master Gundappa Viswanath.  Ian Botham the mighty allrounder was  only 25 years old, in the two-and-a-half years since his Test debut he had taken by storm a cricket world in need of good news after the schism caused by World Series Cricket. In 23 Tests he had scored 1095 runs at 35.32 and taken 122 wickets at 19.22. His first spell was lively but he beat the bat regularly without finding the edge. He returned just before lunch to claim the prized wicket of Sunil Gavaskar, and in the first over of his third spell removed Sandeep Patil and Kapil Dev, polishing off the innings just before the close to finish with 6 for 58.

The next day was a rest day, caused by a total eclipse, and when the match resumed England were reduced to 58 for 5, unable to cope against a moving ball. Botham changed the tides with a century – in between,  keeper  Taylor was adjudged caught behind by umpire Jiban Dhan Ghosh off Kapil Dev’s bowling. Viswanath asked Taylor whether he nicked it and the English batsman replied in negative. The Indian captain then called him back.  The result changed the fortunes of some Cricketers too !! Botham returned home to take over the captaincy from Mike Brearley, and his form plummeted. In the next 12 Tests he played, he managed 276 runs at 13.14 and 35 wickets at 33.08, and sacked after the Lord's Test of 1981, 16 months after his Bombay triumph, he only retained his place in the XI on the request of the returning Mike Brearley.

Those were the days of classy allrounders – mercurial Kapil Dev, diabolic Imrankhan, classy Richard Hadlee and terror Ian Terrance Botham. 

Pakistani politics is changing very fast but very few can predict who will be the next Prime Minister when elections are held a few weeks from now. Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaaf (PTI) leader Imran Khan is confident that he is the one. Former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has given him the title of “ladla” (favorite), and we all know who he is alluding to. There is no doubt that Ladla   Imran Khan too has aspirations. 

Dominant and domineering, Ian Botham was not merely the top English cricketer of the 1980s but the leading sports personality. In an era of discreet footballers - before Paul Gascoigne and David Beckham - he commanded endless newspaper headlines as his career surged improbable heights and bottomless depths. Within a year of being elevated from Somerset to his England debut in 1977, he was undisputed as the country's leading allrounder; within three years he was captain; within four, he had resigned (a minute before being sacked), his form shot to pieces.  Throughout his career Botham relished the big stage, India were clearly his favourite opposition.

But he has been controversial too ~ hitting the headlines many a times including breaking bed in Caribbean and smoking forbidden substance – now allegations on his charity taking care of his daughter only.  MailOnline and other mainline media report that Sir Ian Botham's charity handed up to £94,000 to his daughter's PR company last year 'but NOTHING to charitable causes' – while receiving  £137,000 in donations in the year to March 2017 .. .. .. Sola Events, run by Botham's daughter, handled publicity for walk and dinner but  neither his daughter nor the firm appear on charity accounts as required.

The news reveals that Sir Ian Botham's personal charity handed up to £94,000 to his daughter's company last year but  didn't spend anything on charitable activities despite receiving almost £137,000 in donations.  UK Charity Commission published accounts for the year to March 2017, highlighting the feats of endurance people have undertaken to raise funds for his group. Beefy was knighted in 2007 for his charity work and services to sport, but The Sunday Times reports his Charity Foundation's accounts record that 'no charitable grants were made' in the period.

They also show no cash was spent on charitable activities, but £94,217 was spent on fundraising. These included 'planning and upfront costs' for the ex-cricketer's charity walk through Australia last year and a ball which counted Piers Morgan, David Gower and Michael Parkinson among its guests. The publicity for both events was overseen by Sola Events, a company owned by Sir Ian's daughter, Sarah.  The news comes six months after the ex-cricketer said his charity would be winding up its operation.

Living North magazine interviewed the father and daughter in 2014, explaining Sola 'organises all of Botham's charity events'. Sir Ian told the publication his charity was a 'family affair' but his accounts do not list Sarah or Sola, nor do they make clear that payments to Sola are 'related-party transactions' as Charity Commission rules demand. Sarah declined to comment to The Sunday Times. MailOnline has contacted her and the Foundation for a statement. The Foundation failed to respond to the Times.

With regards – S. Sampathkumar
10th May 2018

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