Being 0-1 down in the four-Test series, the Indians actually have no choice. “Discipline is what should make the difference,” a somewhat pensive Sourav Ganguly told The Telegraph Wednesday morning.
The Indian captain’s mind, after all, isn’t made up on the one bowling slot which has been worrying coach John Wright as well. Specifically, whether to have three seamers and one spinner (Harbhajan Singh) or play both spinners and omit Ajit Agarkar.
Anil Kumble, of course, is recovering from a left calf muscle strain. The issue will be settled if he simply isn’t fit to last five days. However, if Kumble recovers, then Sourav and Wright could be faced with a difficult decision. If it comes to a re-run of Port-of-Spain, not many months ago, then Kumble will sit out.
The wicket, incidentally, has left even Nasser Hussain confused. “It will be a good toss to lose,” the England captain quipped, adding: “At this stage, I can only guess as to how the wicket will behave. It has some grass, has a few cracks and the ball swings... Picking our XI won’t be easy.”
[As reported in Wednesday’s Late City edition, Alex Tudor was released Tuesday to play for his County, Surrey. According to Hussain, Tudor “needs some overs in the middle” to convince the selectors about total recovery. It’s a mystery why, in the first place, Tudor was added to the second Test squad.]
Rookie Stephen Harmison does seem to have the edge, but Dominic Cork (who swings prodigiously) is in the frame as well. An ‘outrageous’ move may see all quicks playing, with Ashley Giles being the man out.
Should Durham’s Harmison get a look-in, he will be the second debutant — the other being Kent’s Robert Key, who will open with Michael Vaughan. Hussain, though, was firm that Harmison wouldn’t get the break “only” because people “wish” to watch him.
“We aren’t good enough, yet, to play somebody simply because there’s so much interest in him.”
Sourav, for his part, maintained he wouldn’t go entirely by the toss. “What matters is five days of good cricket... I’m not worrying too much (about the toss).” It’s nice to be positive, rather than being hyper over which side the special Royal Mint coin will land.
The Indian captain’s own assessment is that the wicket “will do a bit” early on and, then, “settle down.” While the imposing stand, bang opposite the pavilion wasn’t there when Sourav got his second Test hundred (136, in 1996), he still is pretty familiar with conditions.
If anything, the new stand causes “more humidity” and has been a “boon” for the quicker bowlers.
Sachin Tendulkar, too, got a hundred in that (drawn) Test — 177. That was the maestro’s tenth three-figure knock and, clearly, he has moved on since. Now, for India to get going, Sachin must fire on all cylinders. Last week’s blazing hundred versus Worcestershire, perhaps, signals his ‘comeback’.
That Sachin’s failure at Lord’s (16 and 12) hurt India is an understatement.
It’s interesting that England have the lowest (home) success percentage at Trent Bridge — 27.66. Yet, it’s here they have the chance of recording four wins on-the-trot. England’s victories before Lord’s were at Old Trafford (10 wickets) and Edgbaston (by an innings), both against Sri Lanka.
The last time England managed to force four wins in succession was way back in 1978-79. Hussain, however, has no illusions. In fact, he candidly accepted Sourav’s team “is very good” and that India’s climb back into the series could well begin Thursday.
In any case, Hussain doesn’t wish to put his team under “pressure” by reminding them
about the on-three-going-on-four bit. “We’ve been playing good cricket and I just want it to remain that way...”
While Hussain (and coach Duncan Fletcher) will be happy with status-quo, only an upswing in India’s performance will satisfy Sourav and Wright. Hopefully, lessons from that huge 170-run defeat (Lord’s) have been learnt. At 78 for three, England were on the ropes that first afternoon, but...
As Sourav himself put it, discipline — or the lack of it — will make the biggest difference. Both while batting and bowling. “It’s going to be a test of character,” remarked Wright.
Meanwhile, though Ajay Ratra was struck by one of the local quicks during Wednesday’s afternoon nets, manager Ranga Reddy announced there was “nothing to worry.”
India: Wasim Jaffer, Virender Sehwag, Rahul Dravid, Sachin Tendulkar, Sourav Ganguly, V.V.S.Laxman, Ajay Ratra, Ajit Agarkar, Harbhajan Singh, Zaheer Khan and Ashish Nehra.
England (likely): Michael Vaughan, Robert Key, Mark Butcher, Nasser Hussain, John Crawley, Alec Stewart, Andrew Flintoff, Craig White, Ashley Giles, Matthew Hoggard and Stephen Harmison.
Umpires: Rudi Koertzen, Russell Tiffin.
Match Referee: Clive Lloyd.
‘Supercat’ in action
Clive ‘Supercat’ Lloyd will be in the Match Referee’s chair Trent Bridge onwards. Though appointed for the full series, Lloyd had to miss Lord’s as his presence was required in Manchester, during the just-ended Commonwealth Games.
Lloyd, one of Manchester’s most favoured sons, was part of the Games’ organising committee. In his absence, Mike Procter did duty at Lord’s.
Gooch, now the coach at Essex (his old County), occasionally does commentary for the BBC. In town for the second Test beginning Thursday, Gooch spoke to The Telegraph for about 45 minutes. Much of the interview focussed on Nasser Hussain, who made his debut under Gooch in 1989-90.
Following are excerpts
On being regarded as Nasser’s mentor
(Smiles) I did have quite a bit to do with Nasser when he was honing technique and firming his outlook towards cricket... However, he has always been his own man and, in more recent years, I’ve hardly spent time with him... From the early days itself, Nasser had it in him to be a top-level captain. I’m very happy the way things are going for him.
On what separated the young Nasser from others
That fire in his belly... A fierce determination to do well, and a desire to always see his team win. I do recall a young Nasser playing many match-winning innings on difficult wickets... That showed character.
On Nasser as England captain
Nasser doesn’t have a team with stars yet, as is quite apparent, he has forged an excellent partnership with the coach (Duncan Fletcher) to lift England’s stock in the past three years... England can still be beaten, but not so easily. Today, we are definitely more competitive. Nasser likes playing the lead role and has proved his man-management skills. If I may add, handling a bunch of individuals and getting the best out of them is more difficult that setting a field and effecting bowling changes.
On Nasser, too, being a product of the Essex School
Well, at Essex, we encourage cricketers to enjoy themselves... Encourage them to express themselves... There’s this culture of encouragement and we try not to put too much pressure. At the same time, we do have a high work ethic. Of course, there’s pressure when lads move up the ladder but, then, that enjoyment must remain.
On what makes Nasser tick
That fierce determination, that passion... That fire in his belly... England don’t have a Shane Warne or a Sachin Tendulkar but, still, Nasser has had a big role in making England a hardened unit. Indeed, Nasser has set high standards not just for himself but the team. It’s not necessary that a captain has to be liked, yet he must be respected. Nasser enjoys the players’ respect.
On what has helped Nasser and Fletcher turn things around
A good opening combination in Marcus Trescothick and Michael Vaughan; a good new-ball pair in Darren Gough and Andrew Caddick... Whatever the form of cricket, you need good openers and good new-ball bowlers. Injuries do intervene, but that just can’t be avoided... Talking generally, Nasser and Fletcher run a tight ship. Both know what makes the players tick and, crucially, have made the players realise where exactly they stand.
On the slump in the mid and late Nineties
Look, England could always win Test matches, it’s just that we weren’t consistent enough. I mean, we would win one and, then, be wiped out in the next two... For a team to be consistent, each player has to work harder at his game... Each player should be looking to improve and not be satisfied... Attitude, fitness... The areas for improvement can be so many.
On whether, as indicated, Nasser should step down after the 2003 World Cup
There’s so much cricket that family life can suffer... As I’ve said, Nasser is his own man and will make the move at a time he feels is right... When it comes to such personal decisions, the feelings of others don’t mean much. Family life and international cricket don’t always go hand-in-hand, more so when it involves a young family.
On whether he feels sorry for the Graham Thorpes
Absolutely. (After a pause) There are other things in life than cricket... A time comes when the family must be the No. 1 priority, when the welfare of the children, for example, can’t take the backseat.
[Gooch’s own family life, by the way, suffered immensely.]
On whether captains have a shelf life
(Smiles again) And coaches too... If the going is good, the captain can continue till... Otherwise, after three-four years, it’s not a bad idea to move on... To allow somebody else have a crack at the job... Allow the flow of new, fresher ideas... At times, perhaps, that’s needed.
On the pressure factor, especially affecting top guns like Sachin
Different people have different ways of handling it... I don’t think Sachin has a problem. If somebody has a problem, it’s the record-holders — Sachin, I’m convinced, is destined to rewrite all records. The prime time for any batsman is between 25 and 35... Sachin, therefore, can continue for seven-eight years — possibly even ten... Obviously, Sachin has magical natural ability and, more important, the appetite to improve. It’s a great combination.
On the present Indian team
I must confess I haven’t seen too much of your lads to form a definite opinion. But, it does appear John Wright has made a difference. The team is fitter and seems more organised. Batsmen from the sub-continent have always been gifted — that tradition continues.
On whether the Indians, being 0-1 down, can recover
With the class of batting, yes. The Indians should look to posting a big total and, then, getting their bowlers into the act. The key will be pressure.
On working with Andy Flower, Essex’s overseas pro this season
Andy is a role model and having him on our rolls has been fantastic. I’m glad to say he will be returning to Chelmsford next year.
On Counties reverting to two players from overseas (2003 onwards)
Personally, I don’t endorse the move, not that Counties will be obliged to field both in every game.
On whether he will eventually look to coaching England
Hmmm... Don’t really see that happening.... In the immediate future, there is a lot to do at Essex itself.
Finally, on the next World Cup
(Laughs) The smart money has to be on Australia... I expect England to be competitive, expect India and Pakistan to be strong contenders... Pakistan, though, remain so unpredictable. If they click, they can wipe the floor with any team. Otherwise... At home, South Africa will also be formidable...
[Gooch, incidentally, played in three World Cup finals — 1979, 1987 and 1992. He was, of course, captain during his last appearance. As it turned out, England finished second-best all three times — to the West Indies, Australia and Pakistan, respectively.]
According to The Telegraph’s sources, permission has already been sought. Indeed, the BCCI shouldn’t think twice simply because the idea behind Kaif and Dinesh Mongia staying back was that they should “remain in touch” with the game.
Depending on how the cookie crumbles, Leicestershire could be interested in Kaif for the entire 2003 season as well. Anil Kumble, it may be recalled, turned out for the County in 2000.
Rousing receptions are generally exclusive for cricketers, but a soft-spoken 22-year old from a narrow bylane of Ekbalpur completely stole the show Wednesday. Mohammed Ali Qamar arrived here amid rapturous ovation from thousands who had gathered at the Netaji Subhas Airport.
The ovation that the Manchester Commonwealth Games gold medallist got could give even Sourav Ganguly a run for his money.
Young pugilists from Kidderpore School of Physical Culture (KSOPC) gathered at the airport to greet the champion. “He is our hero… we have seen him grow up,” a young enthusiast with boxing gloves on said at the airport.
Crackers burst and the fans shouted slogans as news reached that Ali had landed. About a 100 people moved well inside the airport to greet the champion. They had only about 20 tickets between them. The police remained a spectator.
However, no representative from the state government was present at the airport. A flower bouquet on behalf of sports minister Subhas Chakraborty did land, but that was about it. The government’s involvement was a little low key, maybe, compared to medal winners of other states in their hometowns. “It would have felt nicer had someone from the government been there,” Ali summed up at the press conference.
However, that could not dampen the spirits of his fans. He was almost dragged onto a pickup truck and a huge convoy of about 100 cars and motorcycles led Ali’s truck from the airport to Ekbalpur. As people gathered on the roadside to greet the new champion, the convoy covered the distance of about 35 km in 35 minutes or so, caring little for the traffic rules, that is.
Qamar’s next destination, the KSOPC was in a real festive mood. Thousands gathered as the young boxer, along with his coach Meherajuddin Ahmed, were given a grand welcome. Ali said along the reception that his main aim was an Olympic medal. “It will be a real dream-come-true,” the exhausted Ali signed off.
Had they not been donning the traditional green-and-maroon colours in Wednesday afternoon’s Super Division tie against Ever-Ready, Subrata Bhattacharya’s team could well have passed off as Patuapara FC. Poor Jose Ramirez Barreto must have been cursing himself for the decision to renew his association with a club he has helped scale great heights in the last three seasons.
Of course, as the coach emphasised, the defending champions still managed a 2-0 verdict. But, if Subrata does an honest post-mortem, he’ll realise that the apparently facile victory was largely due to the newly-promoted Ever-Ready’s lack of ideas inside the striking zone.
Mohun Bagan got the lead as early as in the 14th minute. It was a clumsy goal and could easily have been averted by an alert defence. An Umesh Sharma shot ricocheted off a defender and fell handily for Lolendra Singh. His first attempt was partially blocked by the goalie but off the rebound, Lolendra made no mistake.
The second goal, registered 26 minutes after half-time, was hardly more authentic. Tarif Ahmed’s weak attempt off a Dulal Biswas corner took a wicked deflection and Sheik Sanjib stretched out to push the ball in past ‘keeper Arindam Ghosh.
The goal apart, Mohun Bagan did nothing of note in the entire opening session. Lolendra and Dulal did race down the flanks once in a while, but that was that. The crosses were either purposeless or were received by leaden-footed teammates.
The midfield was a big vacuum with too many greenhorns making up the numbers. The absence of Basudeb Mondal — who was denied permission to play by the AIFF — was clearly felt. The rear-line was anything but reassuring, with Sumit Sengupta being a complete misfit. Barreto had to spend more time in his own half, trying to bail out an ailing defence.
Ever-Ready looked the more inspired team and even had a ‘goal’ disallowed. Just past the half hour, their new Nigerian recruit Celestine headed home a low cross only to find the assistant referee’s flag being held up.
Shortly before halftime, Amit Das worked his way up the right and curled in a decent centre. The tall Yakubu outjumped Ever-Ready forwards Bhabani Mohanty and Celestine to save the Mohun Bagan citadel.
Mohanty was quite a livewire and played the lead role in Ever-Ready’s second-half domination. For nearly half an hour, the Mohun Bagan defence was under siege. Fortunately for Subrata’s team, the opponents didn’t have anyone to produce the final touches or a telling shot.
It was only after the second goal that Mohun Bagan looked their own self with Barreto surging upfield to play his natural game. Tarif missed two sitters and Sanjib one in the final 15 minutes.
Even if those goals had materialised, the Mohun Bagan fans couldn’t have gone home a satisfied lot.
Mohun Bagan: Amit Sinha Roy; Sumit Sengupta, Kajal Bhattacharjee, Yakubu, Dulal Biswas, Gourab Datta, Umesh Sharma (Rajib Ghosh, 72), Amar Ganguly (Sunil Chhetri, 46), Lolendra Singh (Tarif Ahmed, 67), Jose Ramirez Barreto, Sheik Sanjib.
Ever-Ready: Arindam Ghosh, Dipankar Roy (Sankha Roy Chowdhury, 78), Sandipan Deb, Madhusudan Majumdar, Anupam Sarkar, Suman Ghosh, Mohammed Rafiq (Surajit Chakraborty, 67), Debraj Chatterjee (Amit Das, 37), Bhabani Mohanty, Celestine Emeka, Bimal Sarkar,
Referee: Kashinath Sen.
“The Asian Games will be tough and I’ll have my task cut out,” Qamar said on his return to the city after his triumph in Manchester. “In my category (light-flyweight), the Olympic champion is from Thailand. There are also some good pugilists from Uzbekistan and Kazaksthan,” said the youngster who created history by becoming the first Indian to win gold from the Commonwealth Games boxing ring.
Qamar leaves for Patiala in seven days where he will take part in a camp under Bulgarian coach Peter Styeno.
The Boxing Federation of India had also planned a foreign trip before the Asian Games for Qamar, but it was cancelled at the request of Styeno to avoid injury, the Federation authorities informed.
“Styeno took charge of me about a year back and started working on my basics, which proved to be a real help,” Ali added. The champion boxer felt that more such coaches will help Indian boxing go a long way. He, however, felt that the training camp in Patiala needs to be upgraded in a some ways to provide quality boxers. “The gymnasium is too small. The punching bags should also be better.”
Qamar also acknowledged there are a few things that he should address quickly to make it bigger in the world-stage. “I’ll have to work on my rearguard action as well as increase the counter-speed.” Talking about the preparations for the Asian Games, he said, “Other than working on these deficiencies, I’ll watch the videos of the top Asian boxers and work out my strategy with my coach.”
Qamar feels that his final bout at the Commonwealth Games against British boxer Darren Langley was undoubtedly the most difficult. “Till a certain time, I did not know the score and my coach kept shouting and informing it.” He also added that the coaches asked him to change strategy towards the middle of the bout, when he was losing, and he went completely on the offensive. “That finally clinched the deal.”
He dedicated his victory to his father, who, he said, was his biggest inspiration. He also said that it was a great feeling to be congratulated by The Telegraph immediately after the victory. “They were the first from Calcutta to ring me up,” he said.
Qamar further added that he was quite sceptical about his pre-quarter final bout against a Lesotho boxer. “He had beaten a top Australian in the earlier round and I had to chalk my strategy really well. As it turned out, I did not have too much difficulty in beating him.”
But he felt that his fellow boxer Som Bahadur Pun was terribly unlucky to lose out to a Pakistani boxer. “With the head of the world boxing federation being a Pakistani (Anwar Choudhary), the judges did not have the courage to rule Pun the winner,” Ali commented.
He however, looked overwhelmed at the reception he got on his returning home. “I never expected so many people to be present, it’s really a great feeling.”
The soft-spoken 22-year old holds the Felix Savon, the legendary Cuban boxer as his idol. “Muhammad Ali came to India in the early 80s, but I did not get a chance to interact with him. I was too young then,” he signed off.
New twist to Mondal dramaThere was a fresh twist to the Basudeb Mondal case Wednesday. The Mohun Bagan medio could not play the Super Division match against Ever-Ready because of an AIFF directive.
The national federation, in fact, has asked the IFA not to let Basudeb play for the club till a decision has been taken on a Bhratri Sangha protest concerning the player’s ‘improper’ transfer documents after a stint in Bangladesh. Basudeb played in Mohun Bagan’s opener against Bhratri. The league sub-committee is due to meet on the Basudeb issue, but no date has been fixed yet.
Ekeh set to join BaganGeorge Ekeh, the Nigerian striker who did well for ITI in the last two seasons, arrived in the city Wednesday to finalise a contract with Mohun Bagan. According to club officials, Ekeh will be hired for the entire season.
CAB XI outCAB XI are out of the KSCA-organised tournament in Bangalore. According to information received here, they went down to Chemplast by eight wickets Wednesday. Resuming their second innings on 21 for two on the final day, CAB XI were bowled out for 204. Deep Dasgupta top-scored with 76 while Subhradip Ganguly chipped in with 39. Chasing 71 for an outright win, Chemplast coasted through.
TODAY IN SPORTFOOTBALL: Calcutta League, 1st division (group B): Aikya Sammilani vs Milan Samity (Mohun Bagan); Sporting Union vs Salkia Friends (Rabindra Sarobar); United Students vs Victoria SC (SAI); Taltala DS vs Garalgacha (Tarun Sangha); Bally Protiva vs Calcutta Police Club (SAP-1, Barrackpur); Aryan vs Muslim Inst. (East Bengal).
SNOOKER: One-frame meet Open handicap meet: Opening day’s matches at Oswal Sports Club.
As expected, the Always A Rainbow-Moccasin daughter was held back while her stable-mate, River Melody threatened to win from the start. Catching up with the leader 600m from home, Amyn Merchant really did not have to do much on the 7-10 hot-favourite who cruised towards the winning-post. Until last winter Moon Mission was known to be comfortable over sharp sprints only.
It was a profitable day for Daniel who scored a lucrative treble. April Ace and Adeline were his other winners. Sharing the limelight with him was the crafty schooler Bharath Singh who matched the Daniel-score that also included the victory of Alcalde in the Commuter Cup, thanks to a clever piece of riding by Cristopher Alford.
In hot pursuit of Beneficent, the champion jockey skated clear of the field passing the 800m marker thus leaving Rutherford Alford on the prime favourite, The Archer, boxed for galloping room behind Amber Dancer and Dancing Dreams. Somewhat panicked, Rutherford switched on the out only to go seven-wide at the turn. A belated effort did help The Archer gain some ground but Alcalde’s authority remained unchallenged. Bharath also saddled Aiberni and Classic Pursuit to victory.
1. Camballo Handicap 1,100m: (5-4-3-6) April Ace (Merchant) 1; Castle Moon (F. Khan) 2; Calcuttan (C. Alford) 3; Flying Power (Kujur) 4. Won by: 1-1/4; Nk; 5-1/4; (1-12.8). Tote: Win Rs 100; Place: 31; 22; Quinella: 209; Shp: 32; Tanala: 1,088. Fav: Calcuttan (3). Winner trained by Daniel D.
2. Calcutta Fillies Trial Stakes 1,400m: (1-2-3-4) Moon Mission (Merchant) 1; River Melody (B. Gurang) 2; Star Selection (Asghar) 3; Social Girl (Yasin) 4. Won by: 1-1/2; 2-1/2; 5-3/4; (1-33.2). Tote: Win Rs 15; Place: 13; 16; Quinella: 36; Shp: 24; Tanala: 45. Fav: Moon Mission (1). Winner trained by Daniel D.
3. Wind Song Cup 1,400m: (4-6-5-3) Calamint (Shanker) 1; Star Music (F. Khan) 2; Rescue Act (Rabani) 3; Alkido (Islam) 4. Won by: 9-1/4; SH; SH; (1-30.8). Tote: Win Rs 72; Place: 19; 25; 12; Quinella: 328; Shp: 70; Tanala: 1,064. Fav: Rescue Act (5). Winner trained by Mujeeb R.
4. Finalist Handicap 1,400m: (3-5-6-1) Aiberni (C. Alford) 1; Grand Lodge (Gowli) 2; Royal City (Merchant) 3; Mr. Bombshell (Islam) 4. Won by: 1/2; 3-1/2; 3-3/4; (1-31.1). Tote: Win Rs 34; Place: 11; 12; 14; Quinella: 64; Shp: 32; Tanala: 121. Fav: Royal City (6). Winner trained by Bharath S.
5. Commuter Cup 1,200m: (1-6-3-2) Alcalde (C. Alford) 1; The Archer (Rutherford) 2; Allodium (Rabani) 3; Beneficent (A. P. Singh) 4. Won by: 1-3/4; 3; Nk; (1-17.4). Tote: Win Rs 30; Place: 17; 10; Quinella: 18; Shp: 41; Tanala: 163. Fav: The Archer (6). Winner trained by Bharath S.
6. Gold Kale Handicap 1,200m: (1-6-3-5) Adeline (Engineer) 1; Kyalami (I. Chisty) 2; Tiger Talk (Saran S.) 3; Blushing Brave (Kujur) 4. Won by: 1-1/4; 1-1/4; Dist; (1-20.1). Tote:Win Rs 42; Place: 19; 19; Quinella: 42; Shp: 44; Tanala: 192. Fav: Tiger Talk (3). Winner trained by Daniel D.
7. Nightjar Handicap 1,000m: (3-2-5-1) Classic Pursuit (M. Maseyk) 1; Brave Venture (Merchant) 2; Storm Centre (Surjeet) 3; Magnifico (C. Alford) 4. Won by: Hd; 2-3/4; Nk; (1-5.1). Tote: Win Rs 135; Place: 63; 15; Quinella: 199; Shp: 60; Tanala: 2,286. Fav: Brave Venture (2). Winner trained by Bharath S.
Jackpot: Rs 52,234; (C) Rs 1,070.
Outer sand track
1,400m: Midas Touch (Upadhya) and Peace Envoy (Merchant) in 1-59s; (400m) 32s. They were level. Aliquaint (Rb) in 1-51s; (400m) 31s. Unextended. Actable (C. Alford) in 1-53s; (400m) 32s.
1,000m: Accredite (Rb) in 1-25s; (400m) 31s. Arbello (C. Alford) and Abashed (Shanker) in 1-16s; (400m) 28s. Note former who was far superior.
800m: Dancing Rhythm (G. Singh) in 1-3s; (400m) 31s. Winning Hand (Rb) in 1-1s; (400m) 31s. Maintains fitness. Rare Gold (C. Alford) in 1-0s; (400m) 28s. An early winner. Adam’s Dream (Amjad) in 56s; (400m) 28s. Note.
600m: No Regrets (Rb) in 42s; (400m) 28s. Was easy. Asprey (Upadhya) and Iron Warrior (Dalpat) in 44s; (400m) 29s. They were easy as they levelled. Suriyothai (A. P. Singh) in 45s; (400m) 28s. Actuate (Rb) in (from 1,200m to 600m) in 48s; Fit.
1,400m: Argolis (Merchant) and Discomatic (A. P. Singh) in 1-45s; (400m) 27s. Former was easy and finished a length better. Prince of Fashion (Tamang) in 1-47s; (400m) 29s.
1,200m: Starina (Rb) in 1-36s; (400m) 32s. Red Trident (Tamang) in 1-31s; (400m) 31s. Coming up.
1,000m: Lawyer’s Love (Brij S.) in 1-17s; (400m) 29s.
800m: Ardon (Asghar) and Alborada (Merchant) in 55s; (400m) 25s. They finished level and they moved well. Gallant Romeo (Merchant) and Excellent Striker (Asghar) in 1-0s; (400m) 27s. Former was far superior. Ballet Master (Yacoob) in 1-2s; (400m) 28s. Bay Dragon (A. P. Singh) and Gra-Lemor (Upadhya) in 1-1s; (400m) 29s. They worked level. Auctioneer (K. Kumar) in 55s; (400m) 28s. Was handy.
600m: Heaven’s Blessing (Shanker) in 40s; (400m) 25s. Very fit. Sky Command (Jayaprakash) in 39s; (400m) 24s. Good. Odyssey (Tamang) in 44s; (400m) 27s. Easy.
400m: Scenic Song (K. Kumar) in 27s. Bulk Bul (Engineer) in 28s. Simply Monarch (R. Yadav) and Silver Patriarch (R. Ahmed) in 30s. They were level.