Kumble, of course, isn’t the first Indian to make courage-driven headlines. For instance, Mansur Ali Khan ‘Tiger’ Pataudi wasn’t just a legendary captain, he is remembered for his brand of heroism.
Despite losing his right eye in a 1961 car crash in England, when he was the Oxford captain, Pataudi made a quick comeback and progressed to being an outstanding leader. That handicap, though, remained.
But if that injury was off-the-field and called for courage of a different kind, Pataudi’s effort in two Tests — at the MCG, versus Australia, in 1967-68 and at the Eden, against the West Indies, in 1974-75 — stand out.
Specifically talking of his innings of 85 at the MCG, Ian Chappell had this to say in his autobiography, Chappelli: “The Indians were easily beaten, but one man who impressed me was their captain, the Nawab of Pataudi. He missed the first Test because of a hamstring injury, yet came into the Melbourne Test, a man with one eye and one leg, to score a magnificent 85 in bad light and on an unpredictable wicket.”
Speaking exclusively, more recently, Chappell still remembered that as “about the most courageous innings” he had ever seen.
Contacted by The Telegraph in New Delhi last evening, Pataudi himself reminisced: “I was in much more pain in the first innings, when I scored 75… I would have felt better had I been allowed a runner, but… I did, however, have one in the second innings. And, so, getting those 85 runs wasn’t as difficult as that first innings effort… The first time, every run hurt…”
Pataudi, who took Kumble’s (“nothing exceptional”) line, added he only played off the backfoot in both those innings.
“Frankly, I didn’t have a choice… I simply had to make the most meaningful contribution I could… Moreover, being the captain, I had to set the appropriate example,” Pataudi remarked.
Looking back on that (first innings) Eden effort — taking guard afresh after being hit on the chin by an express Andy Roberts bouncer — Pataudi said: “Well, I’d misjudged and ducked into that short-pitched one… I was stitched-up at the ground itself and given a heavy dose of pain-killers.
“Was I initially in much pain? No, because a major injury numbs the area… Then, later, the pain-killers come into play… I do remember taking a string of fours (four in succession) off Vanburn Holder, when I resumed the innings…”
Pataudi scored only 36, but that remains bracketed with Gundappa Viswanath and Bhagwat Chandrasekhar’s sterling performances in the same Test — incidentally, won by India on New Year’s Day 1975.
“Actually, Kumble’s bravery must get the highest marks because he suffered an injury which necessitated surgery… Like the rest of India, I’m looking forward to his early return,” is how Pataudi signed off, just a shade sentimentally.
U-20 soccer team to tour BangladeshThe Indian under-20 football team will tour Bangladesh in the last week of June as a part of the preparation for the Asia Cup tournament that will take place at Calcutta in July. The first phase of the preparatory session with the probables is currently going on at the SAI and it will continue till June 5 and the second phase commences from June 15. Meanwhile, efforts are on to send the national under-16 team to Germany in July in preparations for the second phase of the Asian Championship in July.
Bournvita CA cruise aheadBournvita CA romped to an easy nine-wicket victory in the Pepsi CAB sub-junior cricket tournament at the Eden Gardens Saturday.
Other scores: Dum Dum Sporting Club 81. Bournvita CA 82/1. Bournvita won by 9 wkts. Shakti Sangha. Bhadrakali Cricket Organisation 117/3. BCO won by 7 wkts. Agragami CCC 111/9. Agragami CCC won by I wkt. Sports Lovers Association of Bengal 137/6. Shilpasree CCC 79. SLAB won by 58 runs.
Mohun Bagan AGM heldThe AGM of the Mohun Bagan club took place Saturday in spite of an injunction from the court. The financial report of the club from 1990 to 2001 was presented in the meeting. The club secretary Anjan Mitra said that the club has a current bank balance of Rs 1.51 lakh. He also said the club will hold the elections according to the rulings of the court.
Dhillon in finalsKaran Dhillon reached the finals of the both under-14 and under-18 categories of the Britannia junior age-group tennis tournament currently going on at the Ordnance Club Hastings. In the under-14 category, Dhillon will take on Ranjan Prasad while he will face Sourav Sukul in the under-18.
Ragni Vimal and Shramishtha Chowdhury will clash for the girls’ under-18 category title.
Telegraph meetTransworld thrashed Selvel B 6-0 in The Telegraph Merchants’ Cup match at the CCFC ground Saturday.
Other results: Infar 2 Usha Martin 0, HTA 3 Citicorp 2, Confreight Shipping 1 ITC Infotech 0, Madhya Bharat Papers 4 KQ School Advantage 0, Blue Star 3 Indian Aluminium 0, Bharat Petroleum 3 Price Waterhouse Coopers 1, Jet Airways 0 The Taj 0, Norinco 1 Bata India Ltd 0, IISCO 5 HDFC 1, CA TCG Software 1 ACCEL ICIM 0, Telegraph Metro 1 Magma Leasing 0, Digital Think A 4 Tata Power 0, Selvel A 2 Bayview Technologies 1, Tata B 1 Magors 1, Tata Tea 4 Apeejay Surrendra Group 1, J Thomas 1 Digital Think B 0, India Foils 2 Transways 1, Tata A 5 Telegraph Sports 0, O&M 3 ITC B 0, Transworld 6 Selevel B 0, ABN AMRO 6 Marine Container Services 0, ITC A 2 ICRA 0, Berger Paints 1 Carritt Moran 0.
TODAY IN SPORTSOCCER: The Telegraph Merchants’ Cup: Sanjeevani Projects vs Carritt Moran, Berger Paints vs Sony India, McNally Bharat vs Tata Consultancy Services, VGP Portfolios vs HongKong Bank (Matches at 4:30 pm); Telegraph Metro vs CA-TCG Software, Price Waterhouse Coopers vs Norinco, Blue Star vs Bata India Ltd, Jet Airways vs Bharat Petroleum (Matches at 5 pm); Usha Martin vs Confreight Shipping, Citicorp vs KQ School Advantage, INFAR vs Madhya Bharat Papers, ITC Infotech vs HTA (Matches at 5:30 pm); ICICI Bank vs Volga (IFB Agro), BDA vs Britannia, Hyatt Regency vs Ever Ready industries, The Park vs Skytech Solutions (Matches at 6 pm); Selevel A vs Apeejay Surrendra Group, Tata B vs J Thomas, Bayview Technologies vs Digital Think B, Tata Tea vs Magors (Matches at 6:30 pm); Marine Container Services vs Assam Co, Airtel vs Seagrams, ITC A vs ABN AMRO (Matches at 7 pm); Transways vs O&M, Tata A vs Selvel B, ITC B vs Telegraph Sports, Indian Aluminium vs The Taj (Matches at 7:30 pm); IISCO vs Magma Leasing, ACCEL ICIM vs Tata Power, HDFC Bank vs Digital Think A, India Foils vs Transworld (Matches at 8 pm) All matches at the CCFC ground. Cricket: Pepsi CAB Ambar Roy sub-junior tournament (Eden Gardens) Tennis: Britannia Junior Age-Group Tennis final (Ordnance Club, 10 am).
2 pm: Mythical Star 1. Deepam 2. Strombolix 3.
2.30 pm: I Aint Gentle 1. Anchor 2. Fugleman 3.
3 pm: Sherie Rose 1. River Nile 2. I Am Beautiful 3.
3.30 pm: Sound Reasoning 1. Cape Martin 2. Cold Fire 3.
4 pm: Snow Dew 1. Ansbach 2. Taipan 3.
4.30 pm: Annodomini 1. Star of Heaven 2. Belief 3.
5 pm: Noble Executive 1. Winelight 2. So Thrilled 3.
5.30 pm: Rio 1. Kimera2. Conquering Star 3.
6 pm: Dover 1. Arroganto 2. Arzillo 3.
Day’s Best: Snow Dew
Double: Noble Executive & Rio.
Saturday’s Bangalore results(With inter-state dividends)
2nd race: Future Way (Prakash) 1; Rasna 2; Dream Coat 3. Not run: First Way (2) & Diamond Harbour (10). Tote: Win Rs 34; Place: 20; 14; 26; Quinella: 45; Shp: 40; Tanala: 308. Fav: Rasna (3).
3rd race: Red Mamma (Mr Storai) 1; Kingley 2; Spark of Zeus 3. Tote: Win Rs 13; Place: 11; 14; 21; Quinella: 22; Shp: 25; Tanala: 86. Fav: Red Mamma (8).
4th race: Snow Fields (Prakash) 1; Sunny Spice 2; Always Dancing 3. Tote: Win Rs 15; Place: 12; 31; 35; Quinella: 91; Shp: 79; Tanala: 1,134. Fav: Snow Fields (5).
5.Krishnaraja Wadiyar Cup 1,200m: (5-1-12) Top Gun (M. Narredu) 1; Vivid Dreams 2; Spark of Life 3. Won by: SH; 2; (1-15.9).
Tote: Win Rs 21; Place: 13; 19; 16; Quinella: 51; Shp: 61; Tanala: 145. Fav: Top Gun (5).
6th race:Imperial Legend (J. Chinoy) 1; Star Alone 2; Augill Castle 3. Tote: Win Rs 68; Place: 19; 16; 68; Quinella: 149; Shp: 41; Tanala: 11,718. Fav: Regal Society (6).
7th race:Startrix (Thameem) 1; Smart Charmer 2; Rythm ‘N’ Blues 3.
Tote:Win Rs 358; Place: 52; 11; 19; Quinella: 197; Shp: 60; Tanala: 2,861. Fav: Smart Charmer (1).
8th race:Royal Force (J. Chinoy) 1; Silvanus 2; Noble Nancy 3.
Tote: Win Rs 29; Place: 14; 44; 12; Quinella: 577; Shp: 172; Tanala: 1,525. Fav: Noble Nancy (2)
Jackpot:Rs 18,703; (C) Rs 2,590
Treble:(i) Rs 71; (ii) Rs 2,555.