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Tuesday, June 28, 2011

The mayirkonrai [nazhal] connection to Barbados

Have you heard of :   Caesalpinia pulcherrima  -   a species of flowering plant in the pea family, Fabaceae, that is native to the tropics and subtropics of the Americas.  It is commonly known Peacock Flower, Red Bird of Paradise, Mexican Bird of Paradise, Dwarf Poinciana, Pride of Barbados, and flamboyan-de-jardin.  It is native to our land as well and tamil literature has lots of reference to this flower (as Mayirkonrai – nazhal); Krishnachura (in Bengali); Settimandaram (in Malayalam); Sidhakya (in Sanskrit); Ratnagandhi (in Telugu)

After the euphoric win in the First Test, the venue now shifts to Barbados.  At the famous venue occurred the finals of WC 2007 when Australia thrashed Srilanka with Adam Gilchrist making a fine 149 with a golf ball in his glove.    On 16th May 2010, at the same venue was held the 2010 ICC World Twenty20 Final – match was won by England beaing Australia.

Barbados  is an island country in the Lesser Antilles. It is 34 kilometres (21 mi) in length and as much as 23 kilometres (14 mi) in width, amounting to 431 square kilometres (166 sq mi). It is situated in the western area of the North Atlantic.  Barbados is outside of the principal Atlantic hurricane belt.  Barbados was once a Spanish and Portuguese possession till it became a British colony.  Many famous cricketers hail from this Nation which include Sobers, Worrel, Walcott, Weekes,  Gordon Greenidge, Joel Garner and Malcolm Marshall.

The Test match will be played at ‘Kensington Oval’ at Bridgetown, Barbados and has Malcolm Marshall End, Joel Garner End – named after the legendary fast bowlers.   India has never won at Barbados and once failed to chase 120 in 1997.  the track is likely to have plenty of bounce and is known to be result oriented.  The Kensington Oval has also hosted many non-cricket events such as matches of the Barbados national football team, hockey, inter-school athletics, Miss Barbados pageants, and concert events.

WI has dropped its VC - Brendan Nash but in all probability the failed debutants Virat Kohli, Abhinav Mukund along with Vijay are likely to get another chance. Going by indications, India is likely to leave out Amit Mishra who had a good success and go in with 3 pacers.  The line and length bowler Munaf is expected to bowl lengthy spells but as in the past is carrying an elbow injury and is likely to give way to Abhimanyu Mithun.   Harbhajan is on the threshold of getting 400 wickets – just 4 away and could capture them in this Test.  The only solace for the visitors is the form and abysmal record of WI in recent years.  WI did not lose a single Test between 1935 to 1994 and in the 80s dominated the World beating every Team that toured leaving most of them battle-bruised.  The present attack is a pale shadow of what WI used to be and thus Indians do stand a good chance of winning the Series here itself. 

Caesalpinia pulcherrima [mayir konrai] referred in the first para is the national flower and pride of Barbados.  During Apr 1998, the Parliament of Barbados passed the Order of National Heroes.  The act also declared that there are ten national heroes of Barbados and that includes Garfield Sobers

S. Sampathkumar.

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