The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Play or pleasure, follow the guru

Thiruvananthapuram, April 2: In triumph or disaster, Rahul Dravid sticks to the Chappell Way. And the colour blue.

Just as the India coach had travelled to Kerala to seek a few moments of peace before leaving for the World Cup, Dravid has landed up in the coastal state on a private trip.

But how much peace of mind the embattled India skipper is getting, with fans calling for his head after his team’s quick Cup exit, is anyone’s guess.

Apart from a single trip to the beach, which may have reminded him painfully of the West Indies, he has been confined to his hotel.

“He checked in yesterday along with wife Vijetha and son Sameet,” said an employee at the Taj Green Cove Resort, some 16 km from the city.

“Although he spoke about a day’s stay, there is no clear statement of his plans. We’ve not been given any further instruction. He has remained indoors except for a brief stroll on the beach this morning.”

It could be a coincidence but the captain chose to make that lone public appearance wrapped in a blue towel, showing off a colour he has worn with pride down the years on a different wicket.

Greg Chappell had been more adventurous during his trip to Alappuzha in late February, leaving the houseboat he had hired and climbing into an auto-rickshaw with wife Judy for a spell of shopping.

It resulted in him being recognised and mobbed, which got the houseboat owner in trouble with police for having failed to report a foreigner and prompted Chappell to leave the same evening.

But Dravid has an open ticket, so resort staff have no idea when he might be leaving. “He doesn’t look happy at all,” the employee added and hung up. The telephone operator refused to put a call through to Dravid’s room.

Dravid and his family had touched down on a Jet Airways flight yesterday. The resort has hillside guestrooms and duplex flats in two-storey granite blocks with roofs and awnings in elephant-grass thatch.

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