The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Series won, chase for century
- Clash-clobbered captain eyes hometown ton

Chennai, Oct. 20: Sourav Ganguly is chasing a dream. A dream of scoring a Test hundred at the Eden Gardens.

His back injury may have soured the eight-wicket victory at the Chepauk today, but he is confident of playing the third Test versus West Indies from October 30.

Sourav will have an MRI done tomorrow. The results will determine his fate but he seemed to be in discomfort after a collision with Anil Kumble.

“It’s the back and the pelvis region that have taken the brunt of the clash. I have got two pain killing injections and the area is numb now,” Sourav said.

The incident occurred when Sourav ran from backward short leg and Kumble from the deep to catch Pedro Collins’ miscued hit in the mid-wicket area. The two rammed into each other with Kumble’s knee hitting Sourav in the lower abdomen.

Both lay prostrate on the ground after the floored chance. Kumble recovered shortly, but Sourav had to be stretchered out.

Sourav, though, recovered in time for the prize distribution ceremony and the selection committee meeting. He was all praise for Man-of-the-Match Harbhajan Singh and the rest of the youngsters.

“Harbhajan is a matchwinner. We’ve got quite a few matchwinners in the side now — Harbhajan, Kaif, Yuvraj… This has been the key to our success,” Sourav said.

Parthiv Patel came in for special mention from the skipper after earning a word of encouragement from match referee Mike Procter. “Parthiv has come off well in this Test. He’s handy with the bat, though I thought he threw his wicket away. It will be of immense help to the team if he contributes with the bat.”

Accepting that the Indian top-order “did struggle a bit” in the first innings, he was satisfied with the way “the lower-order batted”.

He seemed phlegmatic about the unfortunate ways he has been dismissed of late. “The umpires have a huge role to play. They are under a lot of pressure and the noise is often very disturbing. You can’t really blame them. That’s the way life goes on.”

Even the chance at the Eden to equal Mohammed Azharuddin’s 14 Test wins as captain does not enthuse him much.

“That’s something will happen with time. If it doesn’t take place in Calcutta, it will be at some other place.”

For the moment, it’s his maiden century on his home ground that is his top priority.

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