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Thursday, October 20, 2016

India play New Zealand at Kotla ~ some history; some int tweets

Unlike the Southern parts of India, Delhi has seen much of occupation and wars.  By some accounts Delhi is  known to have been continuously inhabited since 6th  century BC ~ and in most of its history, it has been the capital of many kingdoms, starting from the days of Pandavas when it was Indraprastha.   In AD 1639, the Mughal emperor Shahjahan built a new walled city in Delhi which served as the capital of the Mughal Empire from 1649  which was later captured by British. The Feroz Shah Kotla  is a fortress built by Sultan Feroz Shah Tughlaq to house his version of Delhi city called Ferozabad. It was the new capital of the Sultan of Delhi on the banks of Yamuna river.  History states that  most classical music performances were staged here.

Kotla ground is different ~ mostly no music to bowlers – reportedly smaller where batsmen make merry.  The Feroz Shah Kotla Ground was established as a cricket ground in colonial days of 1883. It is the second oldest international cricket stadium still functional in India, only after the Eden Gardens in Kolkata

In a normal Indian season, this ODI would have been played on Wednesday and not Thursday, but it  was  postponed to accommodate the festival of Karva Chauth. This is festival season in India; the Kolkata Test was advanced to avoid a clash with Durga Puja and Diwali, one of the biggest pan-Indian festivals, takes place during the ODI series. For India, the festivities seem to have extended to the field - they have beaten New Zealand in all four matches of the tour, the Dharamsala ODI being the latest. But it is easier to recover from a loss in ODIs than it is in Tests, even a comprehensive one. For today match too, illness keeps Suresh Raina out.

Remember New Zealand played so well in the last World Cup and were the runners-up. India played NZ first in inaugural World Cup in ODI no. 28 – and lost the match.  It was a 60 overs a side match on 14th June 1975 at Manchester.  Abid Ali made 70 and his grand partnership with Srinivasa Venkatraghavan (26) gave some respect to the total, after the first six batsmen had gone for 101 runs in face of accurate but by no means hostile pace bowling by the Hadlee brothers, Dayle and Richard. Chasing 231, mammoth those days, New Zealand won rather comfortably with  a superb century by their captain, Glenn Turner, who batted stylishly and productively for three hours. He hit thirteen boundaries and remained unbeaten for 114.

The next One dayer was at Lancaster Park, Christchurch in Feb 1976.  In the 35 overs match, helped by Gundappa Viswanath’s 56, India made 154.  Richard Collinge took 5 for 22.  NZ knocked off the required runs losing G Edwards (42); Glenn Turner (53) and Bevan Congdon 45 remained not out. 

Virupa is a smasher and continues to be so entertaining  after his retirement also.  One of his tweets after Ashwin’s great performance at Holkar, read Congrats, Only a married man can understand d urgency of going home early.. Ash quickly thanked him.  The casual exchange took a hilarious turn when Ashwin's better half, Prithi Ashwin  tweeted - hahaha I didn't do much :) – and  Viru's wife Aarti Sehwag joined the party :  Neither did I. Both in a hurry as always ..

With regards – S. Sampathkumar
20th Oct 2016.

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