Ancheri’s grand double knocks out Bagan
BCCI chief ‘writes’ to Wright, Leipus
Mahesh-Tarango in title round
Pune Racing / Al Dente may strike again
Pune Racing/ Moment of Truth comes good
Calcutta Racing/ Track trials

Calcutta, Oct. 6: 
The result was no bolt-from-the-blue stuff. East Bengal dominated all of the first half and scored, Mohun Bagan came back in the second half and equalised, but the Bagan’s defensive weakness let the initiative through as East Bengal rode Jo Paul Ancheri’s double strike to the 107th IFA Shield final, Jose Ramirez Barreto’s reverse strike notwithstanding.

In the midst, there were scrappy events, Chandan Das of East Bengal being marched out for a dash on Barreto and the latter, too, for retaliating. By then, though, the issue had been settled, with the red-gold jerseyed brigade qualifying to play Palmeiras of Brazil in the final.

Early signs were not good for Mohun Bagan. Barreto was, also as expected, policed, mostly by Jackson Egygpong, but Suley Musah too put in his bit in the issue. That was one reason why he wasn’t mobile enough today, leaving the East Bengal right flank somewhat empty. This, though, was made up by the left flank and the middle working overtime, stretching the weak Bagan defence taut.

In the 11th minute, Dipankar Roy moved up the left and passed Amauri da Silva who generally presents an insipid challenge. Goalkeeper Bivash Ghosh was also up, but Roy’s pass reached Ancheri who drew it to the edge and managed a fine tap from acute angle, but the near upright came in the way.

The defensive weaknesses apart, the row of East Bengal offensives were to an extent also because of the lack of sting in the Bagan offensive. The absence of Abdulateef Seriki (who served a one-match match suspension) was sorely felt. His presence used to take a good deal of load off the Bagan defenders’ backs — in other words, it was a good nook to hide their deficiencies. The big culprit was, of course, Amauri.

In the 24th minute Omolaja’s pass reached Dipankar to the left of the box. Dipankar’s centre, quite like on the earlier occasion, was snapped up by Ancheri as Amauri advanced. The Brazilian stood clay-footed, and even collapsed in an Ancheri feint. That was easier for Ancheri than even Bivash, who was under the bar, but failed to react as the East Bengal striker’s left-footed grounder went in past the far post.

The next setback for Bagan was when Basudeb Mondal had to be pulled out by coach Subrata Bhattachaya. Basudeb, the playmaker, had a knee injury that needed attention. By then the East Bengal domination was clear. The attacks came fast and thick, and there were hardly any Bagan offensives except one in the 40th minute when R.C. Prakash failed to get the better of the still mushy surface at the East Bengal goalmouth and in an attempt to pass to a teammate, lost control and with it a great opportunity.

Bagan regrouped and came right back in the second half. Perhaps realising that the East Bengal domination was mostly in the head, they shook off the effect and in the fourth minute Prakash was again in striking distance. Goalkeeper Hemanta Dora was out of charge and it was a close affair, but Dipak Mondal appeared from nowhere to effect a goalline save. Isiaka Awoyemi missed one at the other end.

By then the match had become scrappy, and tempers were rising as a couple of bookings ensued. Bagan earned a flag-kick in the 20th minute of the second session and Rennedy’s shot reached Prakash at the goalmouth. Prakash’s deflection was patted back by Dora, but it was tardy and Barreto shot in from close. That was Barreto’s fifth goal in this championship.

Five minutes later East Bengal threw an offensive back as the Bagan defence thickened. Isiaka entered the box and following two more quick relays the ball reached Ancheri, who was standing with his back to the goal. Ancheri trapped well, made a half-turn and shot home an eloquent left-footer.

That was the end of Mohun Bagan, except that in the 87th minute the two players were marched out. It was a just decision, and none protested.

The day ended with a 35-yard volley by Mohun Bagan’s Dulal Biswas slipping off the crosspiece.

Mohun Bagan, of course, get a chance to redeem some pride Wednesday when the Calcutta League’s Super Division championship leg Derby comes off.


EAST BENGAL: Hemanta Dora, Suley Musah, Jackson Egygpong, Dipak Mondal, Falguni Dutta, Isiaka Awoyemi, Tushar Rakshit (Chandan Das, 62), Anit Ghosh, Dipankar Roy (Bijen Singh, 74), Omolaja Olalekan (I.M. Vijayan, inury time), Jo Paul Ancheri.

MOHUN BAGAN: Bivash Ghosh, Dulal Biswas, Amauri da Silva, Hussain Mustafi, Rishi Kapoor, R.P. Singh (Sumit Sengupta, 82), Basudeb Mondal (Bungo Singh, 74), Jose Ramirez Barreto, Debjit Ghosh (Amar Ganguly, 46), Renedy Singh, R.C. Prakash.

Referee: M.S. Balu (Karnataka)


Calcutta, Oct. 6: 
Less than a week into the Board president’s chair and Jagmohan Dalmiya has acted on many fronts: The National Cricket Academy, Goa, Bihar…

Then, in a move which probably doesn’t have a precedent, he has called the national (junior and senior) selectors to New Delhi for a joint tete-a-tete next week.

What hasn’t been revealed is that Dalmiya has already “spoken” to captain Sourav Ganguly and “written” to coach John Wright and physio Andrew Leipus. It’s significant.

In fact, Dalmiya has also had a talk with players’ representative Anil Kumble, wherein he clarified graded payments and the contract system was only being “put on hold” for technical reasons.

“I did speak to Sourav the other day (in Johannesburg) and have faxed a letter to both Wright and Leipus… The coach has been asked to list his reasons for the team’s dip in performance after the very fine series-win versus Australia, while the physio should give his views on the injuries to so many players,” Dalmiya told The Telegraph this evening.

Lest this initiative be misunderstood, Dalmiya insisted his letters “were not” in the form of a show-cause.

He added: “Getting heads to roll isn’t on my agenda. Rather, I would like to know why we aren’t doing well and, then, take the necessary steps… First, let me hear from Wright and Leipus.

“I don’t wish to pre-judge. After all, it’s possible that extra ounce of effort, if I may put it this way, could have been lacking on the part of administrators… So, let’s get to the root cause and look at corrective measures.”

Aware that the coach and physio are on tour, Dalmiya has asked them “to take it easy” and not treat his letter as “burden-adding.” Obviously, he will have a one-on-one when the team returns in end-November, after the Test series.

Dalmiya indicated he didn’t wish to go public over what he and Sourav discussed, but did say the players have been sent a message (through the captain) to “pull up their socks, when necessary.” A big enough — and welcome — pointer that berths ought not to be taken for granted.

Of course, the president sent his “best wishes,” as well.

Interestingly, not that Sourav had problems with Dr A.C.Muthiah (Dalmiya’s predecessor), but most captains are bound to be more comfortable when the Board president is from the same state.

Incidentally, Dalmiya-baiter (and Muthiah backer) Raj Singh Dungarpur had made Sourav a target, specially in the days leading up to the captain’s appointment for South Africa. Irrespective of his public posture, Sourav did get affected.

Meanwhile, Dalmiya pointed out his session with the selectors shouldn’t be seen as a step towards influencing team selection. “That won’t ever happen… I just wish to know what the selectors’ thoughts are, particularly with regard to preparing for the junior World Cup and the 2003 showpiece, in South Africa…”

Dalmiya confirmed he favours retaining Rodney Marsh as consultant to the (Bangalore-located) Academy. Not surprisingly. his thoughts on Geoff Marsh are different.

Clearly, while Dalmiya doesn’t want to be labelled an “interventionist” president, he has begun working towards being remembered as a hyper-active one.


Calcutta, Oct. 6: 
Mahesh Bhupathi and Jeff Tarango reached the Kremlin Cup final in Moscow today. They will meet Max Mirnyi (Belarus) and Sandon Stolle (Australia) for the title tomorrow.

According to information received here, the unseeded Indo-US pair beat second seeds Jiri Novak and David Rikl (Czech Republic) 6-3, 6-4 in today’s semi-final. The victory came in 50 minutes.

Mirnyi and Stolle, seeded fourth, knocked out top-seeded Americans Donald Johnson and Jared Palmer 6-4, 6-4 yesterday.

Bhupathi and Tarango had earlier upstaged US Open champions Wayne Black and Kevin Ullyett 7-6 (7-5), 6-3 in the quarter finals. The Zimbabwean pair was seeded third.


Pune, Oct. 6: 
Working well since her Eve Champion Trophy win, the Darius Byramji-ward Al Dente, to be ridden by Aslam Kader, may strike again in the Western India Owners Fillies’ and Mares Stakes in Pune of Sunday.


1.15 pm: Idaho 1. Valencia 2. Star Power 3.

1.45 pm: Flying High 1. Triple Charm 2. Spur of The Moment 3.

2.15 pm: Wordsworth 1. Emblaze 2. Handsome Lad 3.

2.45 pm: Timbavati 1. Piaget 2. Courtesan 3.

3.15 pm: Pleasure Hunt 1. Vivienne 2. Eminent Leader 3v.

3.45 pm: Al Dente 1. Endorsement 2. Anagram 3.

4.15 pm: Say It Loud 1. Star Cutter Furiously 3.

4.45 pm: Smooth Operator 1. Adam’s Delight 2. Jodhpur Lad 3.

Day’s Best: Say It Loud

Double: Flying High & Pleasure Hunt


Pune, Oct. 6: 
M. P. Jodha-ward Moment of Truth won the J. E. Hughes Trophy in Pune on Saturday.


(With inter-state dividends)

1. A. J. Wadia Plate 1,200m: (2-3-1) Top Gun (Gallagher) 1; Royal Secret 2; Fantasy 3. Won by: 4; 1-1/4; (1-13.4). Tote: Win Rs 13; Place: 10; 22; 12; Quinella: 58; Tanala: 113. Fav: Top Gun (2).

2. Nelston Trophy 1,600m: (3-5-6) Aureus (Shroff) 1; Firecrest 2; Princess Maha 3. Won by: 2-3/4; 7; (1-41.9). Tote: Win Rs 21; Place: 12; 12; 40; Quinella: 27; Tanala: 337. Fav: Aureus (3).

3. Fair Night Plate 1,600m: (6-8-7) Malada (Sandeep) 1; Ride The Lightning 2; Charismatic 3. Not run: Chelsea (3). Won by: Nk; 1/2; (1-44.8). Tote: Win Rs 892; Place: 116; 24; 14; Quinella: 2,369. Tanala: 29,646. Fav: Charismatic (7).

4. Amontillado Plate 1,400m: (5-7-6) Battle Star (Rajendra) 1; Eye To Eye 2; Chiliandrina 3. Not run: Acacia Blossom (3). Won by: 1-1/4; 8; (1-30.9). Tote: Win Rs 14; Place: 11; 19; 16; Quinella: 41; Tanala: 132. Fav: Battle Star (5).

5. J. E. Hughes Trophy 1,800m: (4-2-6) Moment of Truth (Rajinder) 1; Mille Fiori 2; Reflecting 3. Won by: 3/4; 3; (1-58.6). Tote: Win Rs 23; Place: 13; 22; 15; Quinella: 76; Tanala 290. Fav: Moment of Truth (4).

6. Aalijanab Plate 1,600m: (8-1-3) Betsy (Chauhan) 1; Menorca 2; Lek 3. Won by: 1/2; 2; (1-47.3). Tote: Win Rs 131; Place: 28; 14; 66; Quinella: 213; Tanala: 12,051. Fav: Menorca (1).

7. Baraloy Plate 1,000m: (7-14-9) Pure Pearl (Gharat) 1; Meadow Royale 2; Flossy 3. Won by: Nk; Hd; (1-3.9). Tote: Win Rs 223; Place: 51; 79; 37; Quinella: 4,645; Tanala: 88,242. Fav: Chamonix (4).

Jackpot: Rs 1,67,024 (Carried over); (C) Rs 10,737.

Treble:(i) Rs 1,482; (ii) Rs 6,056.


Calcutta, Oct. 6: 
The following is the pick of the track work held today morning:

Outer sand track

1,400m: Rare Gold (C. Alford) and Crucible (Amil) in 1-50s; (400m) 28s. Former 4 ls better.

1,200m: Chivalrous (Dalpat S.) in 1-35s; (400m) 31s. Artisia (Amil) and Automatic (Surender S.) in 1-37s; (400m) 30s. Level.

800m: Flinders (Som S.) in 59s; (400m) 27s. Aberdan (Rabani) in 58s; (400m) 28s. Flamebird (Som S.) in 56s; (400m) 28s. Easy. Clarice Cliff (Rabani) in 59s; (400m) 28s. Fit.

Monsoon track

800m: Touch of Elegance (Smith) in 55s; (400m) 27s.

600m: Blessed Spirit (Rb) in 41s; (400m) 25s. Good.

Sand track

1,400m: Maltayar (Connorton) in 1-44s; (400m) 28s. Lively Project (Connorton) in 1-46s; (400m) 26s. Adeline (Connorton) in 1-38s; (400m) 26s. Fit. Stately Don (Connorton) in 1-47s; (400m) 26s. Good. Anokato (Connorton) in 1-35s; (400m) 25s. Note.

800m: Bul Bul (Engineer) in 58s; (400m) 29s. Jayaashva (Jaiswal) in 55s; (400m) 26s. Rheinheart (G. Singh) and Tequila Shot (Shanker) in 55s; (400m) 28s. Former far better. Don Vittorio (Shan-ker) in 57s; (400m) 26s. Friendly Knight (Jaiswal) in 56s; (400m) 26s. Regency Times (Connorton) in 1-1s; (400m) 31s. Tsavo (Amjad) in 1-1s; (400m) 30s.

400m: Pneumatic Power (Gurang) in 29s.

Gate Practice: From 2,000 to 1,200m: Calabash (Amil) and Carbon Copy (Bird) in 55s. Former 4 ls better.


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