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Tuesday, November 22, 2022

How to name it ! - how will Narayan Jagadeesan name his child ?!?

I think Narayan Jagadeesan is still unmarried – my son asked me a hypothetical Q – on what NJ  would name his son / daughter ?? – a Cricket Q only !!

Miles away lies – Sydney -   the capital city of the state of New South Wales, and the most populous city in both Australia and Oceania. Located on Australia's east coast, the metropolis surrounds Sydney Harbour and extends about 70 km (43.5 mi) towards the Blue Mountains to the west.  Sydney is made up of 658 suburbs, spread across 33 local government areas. Residents of the city are known as "Sydneysiders” -  nicknames of the city include the 'Emerald City' and the 'Harbour City'.  Aboriginal Australians have inhabited the Greater Sydney region for at least 30,000 years, and Aboriginal engravings and cultural sites are common throughout Greater Sydney. The traditional custodians of the land on which modern Sydney stands are the clans of the Darug, Dharawal and Eora peoples.

During his first Pacific voyage in 1770, James Cook charted the eastern coast of Australia, making landfall at Botany Bay. In 1788, the First Fleet of convicts, led by Arthur Phillip, founded Sydney as a British penal colony, the first European settlement in Australia.  After World War II, Sydney experienced mass migration and by 2021 over 40 per cent of the population was born overseas.  

We grew up seeing the exploits of Clive Lloyd- saw a bit of Roy Fredricks, then it was Gordon Greenidge and Desmond Haynes opening partnerships, Allwyn Kallicharan,  King Isaac Vivian Alexander Richards, Richie Richardson .. .. .. and later Brian Charles Lara, born in 1969 at Cantaro, Santa Cruz, Trinidad. 

At a time when we fully admired Sachin Ramesh Tendulkar, there was Brian Lara scoring massive scores .. with elegance.  Even his stance was thrilling - the bat raised high in the air, the weight poised on a bent front knee, the eyes low and level. Then the guillotine would fall, sending the ball flashing to the boundary.  Lara played for Trinidad's junior football and table tennis sides, but it was cricket that really drew him. In 1990, at 20, he became Trinidad and Tobago's youngest captain, and that year, he also made his Test debut, in that 3rd Test, Lahore,  1990,   scoring 44 and 6 against Pakistan.  Masood Anwar too debuted in that match but played only that solitary test !!

In the space of two months in 1994, Lara's 375 and 501 not out broke world records for the highest Test and first-class scores, but sudden fame seemed to turn him into a confused and contradictory figure. During an inventive but largely fruitless spell as captain of a fading West Indies team, Lara reiterated his genius by single-handedly defying the 1998-99 Australian tourists with a sequence of 213, 8, 153 not out and 100.

Lara ended up with  11953 runs in 131 tests with 34 centuries; 10405 runs in 299 ODIs with 19 centuries. Though he scored 375 & 400 ! -  his 277 at Sydney was significant.  In his fifth test, played at Sydney in Jan 1993, Lara scored his maiden century – 277 – West Indies went on to win the final two tests taking the series at 2-1 -   Lara went on to name his daughter Sydney after scoring 277 at SCG.

Yesterday at Chinnaswamy stadium, Bengaluru in Vijay Hazare tourney against Arunachal Pradesh – so many  records were shattered by the Tamil Nadu batter during his innings of 277 off 141 balls against Arunachal Pradesh at the Chinnaswamy Stadium in Bengaluru.  His individual score of 277 is now  the highest individual score in men's List A cricket. The previous highest was 268 by Alistair Brown against Glamorgan in 2002. Jagadeesan's 277 is also the highest score in all List A cricket, surpassing 271 not out by Sripali Weerakkody against Pushpadana Ladies in the 2007 Sri Lanka Women's One-Day tournament.

With Sai Sudarshan, the other centurion, NJ shared a partnership of 416 – becoming the first pair to share a 400-run stand for any wicket in men's List A cricket. The previous highest partnership was 372 between Chris Gayle and Marlon Samuels for the second wicket against Zimbabwe in 2015.

The Q on the lines of Lara naming his daughter ‘Sydney’ after his 277 at Sydney Cricket ground – Jagadeesan may name his off-spring after the place he scored 277  .. .. generally, we do not name after places (exceptions like Thirupathi, Palani, Chidambaram, Mathurai ! .. ..  – Bengaluru is sort of ruled out – he may deeply think of Chinnaswami !!

In case you did not know, the Bengaluru stadium is named after M Chinnaswamy, who was the president of the Indian board from 1977 to  1980, and was involved in the administration of Karnataka cricket for close to four decades. The foundation for the construction of the stadium was laid in May 1969 and building began in 1970. The stadium was given Test status in hosted West Indies in the opening match in Nov 1974, even when the stadium was only half-built. That match  saw the debut of two West Indian greats, Gordon Greenidge and Viv Richards.  Hemant Kanitkar debuted and made 65 in his very first International innings. Chinnaswamy represented India in the International Cricket Council in 1965, 1973 and 1977 - 1980. A lawyer by profession, he actively practiced from 1925 till 1975.

With regards – S. Sampathkumar

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