Kapil’s new mission is dil se
Time to kill or get killed
Bhaichung may join camp today
Susanta hattrick
Bangalore Racing/ Accede may outstay all
Bangalore Racing/ They will have to beat me: Shrof
Bangalore Racing/ Acrobat lifts BTC Anniversary Cup
Calcutta Racing/ Track trials

Calcutta, July 13: 
It was at a national U-19 camp in Mumbai, back in the mid-Seventies, that a budding quick was admonished for wanting more rotis.

“India doesn’t produce fast bowlers, so forget extra rotis at meals and seeking to bowl quick,” is how the camp in-charge (who, today, is no more) chided the teenager.

Shaken, he lost his roti-specific appetite, but the hunger for wickets increased. Indeed, two decades on, the budding quick even emerged Test cricket’s most successful bowler.

We are, of course, talking of Kapil Dev.

While it is to be seen how that incident figures in Kapil’s life story (on the small screen), the former Indian captain is himself ‘unearthing’ something similar (involving contemporaries and current cricketers) for a Sony Max series.

“The idea is to let people know how the stars became big names. In the process, others could just get inspired,” Kapil told The Telegraph Saturday afternoon.

In the city to trace Sourav Ganguly’s roots, stop No.1 was old buddy Arun Lal’s academy. From there, Kapil was off to the CC&FC and, then, the present Indian captain’s Behala mansion. The last stop was St Xavier’s where, predictably, he was mobbed.

[It wasn’t any different during a trip to Pizza Hut for a hurried bite.]

The series is expected to be telecast in the lead-up to the 2003 World Cup and, given Kapil’s spontaneous, candid and emotional manner of interacting, Dil Se will surely be the most appropriate title.

Kapil’s candidness, by the way, isn’t limited for the camera’s benefit. At the Ganguly residence, for example, he told Sourav’s parents — who stayed away from the shoot, leaving centrestage for elder son Snehashish — that the captain “had always been lazy.”

However, Kapil quickly offered the equivalent of a balm: “But, don’t worry, his exceptional talent alone outweighs weaknesses…”

Later, Kapil remarked smiling: “I’m being my own self, vibing naturally… Basically, I’m out to enjoy the experience… I can only be myself, isn’t it?”

Driving from one shoot to another, Kapil briefly spoke about two ‘controversial’ moves: Sending Sachin Tendulkar at No.4 and getting Rahul Dravid to wear the big gloves.

“Where Sachin is concerned, the team management knows best… It’s good to have someone who can open and bat at No.4 but, really, it’s up to the management to utilise him most productively. What you or I feel is pretty irrelevant.

“As for Rahul, I favour a horses-for-courses policy… If the team management doesn’t have a place for a specialist keeper and that clicks, I’m all for it. Winning is the bottomline which matters, not so much the playing XI’s composition,” Kapil pointed out.

Incidentally, despite having very publicly “severed ties” with Indian cricket 22 months ago, Kapil did sign off with: “I hope today’s bottomline, at Lord’s, will be the one we wish to see…”

That was dil se.


Calcutta, July 13: 
“Discipline, I need discipline,” India coach Islam Akhmedov murmured while supervising his team’s practice on the eve of the AFC under-20 qualifying match against Kyrgyzstan at Salt Lake Stadium.

“I know exactly what lies ahead of us.” The Uzbek’s study of Sunday’s final game sounds rather typical from a man, around whom the devil never seems to sleep.

Since he took charge two years ago, there have been cartloads of expectations from Akhmedov. He was handed a bunch of young players by the federation with the hope that their transformation from duds to dazzlers would be complete by the time this tournament got underway. Sadly, there are few signs of hope now beckoning Akhmedov at the end of the tunnel.

In fact, he knows it could just be the end of him as well.

There you have it — India are facing their acid test with as much intensity as their coach.

“The boys were too tense yesterday (against Tajikistan). In such a situation, any mistake means you are finished. Such a feeling weighed heavily on them,” Akhmedov said. “We simply failed to play a natural game and missed three points.”

However, there is some injustice in portraying Akhmedov and his team as no-hopers.

They have the advantage of knowing how the world needs to be discovered before rising to the challenge from the Uzbeks. Tajikistan, who are being tipped as the likely qualifier from group four, meet Bhutan in the preceding game.

Both India and Tajikistan are now on four points from two matches. India lead the points table by virtue of a better goal difference.

If Bhutan surprise Tajikistan, or even concede less number of goals than they had against the Indians, Akhmedov’s boys will take on Kyrgyzstan on a vantage position. The margin of victory will then weigh less than the expected on India.

“I hope Bhutan improve fast,” Akhmedov said. And there’s hardly anything sardonic in it. He really means it and indeed, can hope the Himalayan nation becomes Tajikistan’s party-pooper, following their creditable draw with Kyrgyzstan.

Before sending his team out in the middle on Sunday, Akhmedov also seems to have got his priorities right. “Ground play,” he said, will be the key part of his strategy. “We can’t beat the Kyrgyzstan players in the air. Besides, we have a good dribbler in Malsawmtluanga and a good winger in Subhas Chakraborty. Our midfield is also strong. Well, I’ll hope till the last minute.

“Tomorrow is a different game and the boys are aware (of this),” pat came Akhmedov’s reply. Akhmedov agreed the midfielders let him down on Friday. They cannot enjoy the luxury of holding the ball too long against Kyrgyzstan. They must release it quickly and need to feed the attackers constantly, feels the coach.

For obvious reasons, he didn’t let the cat out of his bag so far as his winning formula against Kyrgyzstan is concerned. But going by the stress of urgency Akhmedov now is in, it promises to be hell of a last-gasp effort before killing or getting killed. Both options seem open and no prize in guessing which way he wants to go.


Calcutta, July 13: 
Former India captain Bhaichung Bhutia is expected to join the national team’s ongoing Asian Games preparatory camp in Jamshedpur Sunday. “As per my communication with Bhaichung, he is most likely to join the camp on July 14,” AIFF secretary Albert Colaco said Saturday. He also said the federation is trying to ensure some exposure trips in Europe once the national squad is announced.

Meanwhile, new coach Stephen Constantine has stressed on improving the fitness levels of the players in the camp.

“Fitness is undoubtedly the new mantra for Constantine,” assistant coach Aloke Mukherjee said from Jamshedpur. “He is also very innovative and open to play in various formations,” Mukherjee said of the new coach.

Thirty two players are currently undergoing four hours of daily practice, bulk of the time being used on improving the players’ fitness, the assistant-coach added. The squad is to be announced on July 22.

Bagan’s viewpoint

Mohun Bagan have reservations about releasing key players including Jose Ramirez Barreto for the South Africa tour.

“Who will bear the brunt of the injury a player may sustain,” asked a Bagan official. East Bengal also voiced the same concern adding that it would affect their practice schedule.

“We’ll sit with the coach Monday and thereafter decide our next course of action in this regard,” said a club official.


Calcutta, July 13: 
Bablu Banik scored a double and Laxmi Tudu struck once as Railway FC beat Bata 3-0 while Rajasthan and Milan Bithee played out a 1-1 draw in the first division group A action Saturday. Ranjit Das put Rajasthan ahead while S. Hembrem neutralised the advantage for Milan Bithee.

In the first division group B, Susanta Debnath struck a hattrick, helping Aikya Sammilani thrash Barisha SC 5-1. Subrata Das and S. Ghosh were Aikya’s other scorers while Goutam Das pulled one back for Barisha.

Nandita included

Bengal’s Nandita Das and Mouma Das, along with Poulami Ghatak have been included in the table tennis squad for the Commonwealth Games.


Bangalore, July 13: 
The generously sponsored 2,000m Kingfisher Derby may see a dozen of runners, including three fillies, face the starter tomorrow here. But it looks like a straight contest between the Colts Stakes winner Portman Square and Accede, a fluent winner in each of his last three starts. The winner carries home a purse of more than Rs 25 lakh. However, the popular opinion is against Portman Square because of his suspected stamina, though his trainer Darius Byramji trust that the Warrshan-Number One Lady son will see the trip comfortably.

Stamina, on the other hand, is painted all over the Razeen-Blue Veryan colt Accede. The S. Ganapathy-trainee, has been winning his races with ridiculous ease and may outstay his rivals in the hands of Prakash Bhonsle.


1.30 pm: Polar Charge 1. Barroness Orczy 2. Dark Felt 3.

2 pm: Strange Beauty 1. Cherry Blue 2. Dare You Say 3.

2.30 pm: Royal Carnival 1. Baffert 2. Deepam 3.

3 pm: Star Illustrious 1. So Supreme 2. Twin Star 3.

3.30 pm: Trillenniium 1. Auchterarder 2. Gypsie’s Wish 3.

4 pm: Accede 1. Portman Square 2. Superior Force 3.

4.30 pm: My Star Girl 1. Strombolix 2. Crown Ice 3.

5 pm: Altenburg 1. Refresher 2. Purple Princess 3.

5.30 pm: Marmalade 1. Tide of Fortune 2. Bansuri 3.

6 pm: Soviet Lake 1. Winelight 2. Bryce Canyon 3.

Day’s Best: Marmalade

Double: Star Illustrious & My Star Girl


Bangalore, July 13: 
All concerned are hopeful about winning the Derby. The following are some opinions that matter:

S. Ganapathy: The race is between my colt Accede and Superior Force. My horse has not been stretched in his past triumphs .

D. Byramji: My horse Portman Square will give a tough time to Accede and fight till the end. Pace in the race will be a factor.

J. Dhariwal: It’s Accede on consistency. My horse Classic Act is inexperienced but he is the best stayer in the field.

S. Padmanabhan: The race is strictly between Portman Square and Accede. But Accede may relish the trip better. My filly Free Radical has a place prospect.

B. Prakash: Accede is going from strength to strength.

P. Shroff: Classic Act is stylish winner in his debut run. He will certainly stay the trip.They will have to beat me.

R. Marshall: On his workouts it is Portman Square.


Bangalore, July 13: 
Trained by D. Byramji, Acrobat won the BTC Anniversary Cup in Bangalore on Saturday.


(With inter-state dividends)

1. Sir Bruce Plate, Div-II 1,200m: (1-5-7) Amazing Career (Prakash) 1; Prime Contender 2; Geri 3. Won by: 5-1/4; 3/4; (1-16.1). Tote: Win Rs 12; Place: 11; 59; 18; Quinella: 184; Shp: 191; Tanala: 869. Fav: Amazing Career (1).

2. Royal Randwick Plate 1,100m: (6-9-4) Scarlet Runner (Kader) 1; Asoleado 2; Suhasini 3. Won by: 7-1/2; 1-1/4; (1-10.5). Tote: Win Rs 28; Place: 16; 114; 25; Quinella: 895; Shp: 394; Tanala: 5,680. Fav: Beauty Mission (3).

3. Sir Bruce Plate, Div-I 1,200m: (4-8-5) Fast Trick (Marshall) 1; Southern Goddess 2; Prophecy 3. Won by: 5-1/4; 2-1/2; (1-15). Tote: Win Rs 19; Place: 12; 18; 23; Quinella: 46; Shp: 42; Tanala: 297. Fav: Fast Trick (4).

4. R. M. Puttanna Memorial Cup, Div-I 1,400m: (2-8-3) Set Aside (Shroff) 1; Pettalumma 2; Kingston Heath 3. Won by: 3; 3-3/4; (1-28). Tote: Win Rs 18; Place: 12; 38; 26; Quinella: 114; Shp: 112; Tanala: 761. Fav: Set Aside (2).

5. B. T. C. Anniversary Cup 1,400m: (6-1-13) Acrobat (Kader) 1; Bold Chieftan 2; Ancheta 3. Won by: Hd; Hd; (1-26.5). Tote: Win Rs 72; Place: 28; 17; 78; Quinella: 164; Shp: 66; Tanala: 5,383. Fav: Adamile (3).

6. Confucious Plate 1,200m: (9-3-8) Star Successor (Prakash) 1; Limitations 2; St. Lucinda 3. Won by: 6-1/4; 3-3/4; (1-15.8). Tote: Win Rs 18; Pla-ce: 13; 13; 75; Quinella: 23; Shp: 35; Tanala: 975. Fav: Star Successor (9).

7. M. Arshad Ali Khan Memorial Cup 1,400m: (4-2-6) Name And Fame (Prakash) 1; Obligado 2; Red Mamma 3. Won by: 3; 1/2; (1-30.5). Tote: Win Rs 17; Place: 11; 27; Quinella: 40; Shp: 40; Tanala: 199. Fav: Name And Fame (4).

8. R. M. Puttanna Memorial Cup, Div-II 1,400m: (4-10-1) Star Cavalier (Prakash) 1; Fugleman 2; King’s Pride 3. Won by: 3/4; 3-1/4; (1-28.3). Tote: Win Rs 32; Place: 13; 36; 50; Quinella: 356; Shp: 112; Tanala: 9,498. Fav: Dream Supreme (6).

Jackpot: Rs 1,709; (C) Rs 197.

Treble: (i) Rs 74; (ii) Rs 93.


Calcutta, July 13: 
The following track trials were noted today:

Outer sand track

800m: My Opinion (Bird) in 1-2s; (400m) 29s. Revolution (Amjad) in 59s; (400m) 29s. Easy. Flamebird (Som S.) in 1-0s (400m) 29s. Castle Moon (Amjad) in 59s; (400m) 30s. Zuhaak (Amjad) and Soliel (Bird) in 1-0s; (400m) 30s. Former 2 ls better. Uprising (Bird) in 1-4s; (400m) 30s.

600m: Adam’s Dream (Bird) in 47s; (400m) 30s. Don Vittorio (Shanker) in 47s; (400m) 30s.

400m: Blushing Brave (Amjad) 30s. Timbavati (Bird) in 32s. Abandoned (Som) in 29s.

Sand track

1,400m: Dictate (Haroon) in 1-51s; (400m) 33s. Scenic Song (Jayapra-kash) in 1-56s; (400m) 34s. Discomatic (Upadhya) in 1-56s ;(400m) 32s.

1,200m: Social Girl (Asghar) and Star of Ring (Yasin) in 1-31s; (400m) 28s. Former a length better.

1,000m: Mahika’s Pet (Tamang) and Darth Vader (Brij S.) in 1-14s; (400m) 26s. Level. Global Harmony (Jayaprakash) in 1-16s; (400m) 27s. Fit.

800m: Venus (Som S.) in 54s; (400m) 26s. Fit. Flossy (Som S.) in 1-1s; (400m) 28s. Adeline (A. P. Singh) in 1-2s; (400m) 29s. Star Music (Saran S.) in 57s; (400m) 28s.


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