Keepers’ day out!

Sri Lanka tried to prove why they were second in the ICC one day rankings. Sangakara started the proceedings and went on to score a ton, he carried the bat thorough the innings and was unbeaten on 138. Lanka set a target of 299 for India.

Seriously, with an in form batting line up, I believed we would chase and reach the target though with some struggle. However I never guessed even in my dreams, [yes it was about 2.00am] that India would do this in the fashion Dhoni played.

When Sachin was out cheaply, I was wondering, Pathan would show up however Dravid made one more surprise! Move - Desi “Dhil” Christ aka Donni was promoted to number three. He took about 40 balls to reach half century. It was his day; he went on to score the highest score by a wicket keeper. India won, Dhooni remained 183 Not out, the ball was sent out of the oval about 15 times via FedEx Ground and about 10 times via FedEx Air. The 10th trip did not bring the ball back, the game was over. Frankly I wish Sri Lanka had scored 20 more runs, Dhoni would have got his double hundred. In the later part of the innings, Dhoni was suffering from cramps, Viru ran for him. Cricinfo commentators were discussing about this innings with full excitement. It must have been “One heck of an innings [Thanks Madden] to watch.

Indians have won 3 games in a row; victories were achieved with command and class. For Lanka the only batsmen who seemed to have form was Sangakara, rest of the batsmen are really in poor form. Hope the team recovers and gives a fight in remaining one dayers.

Keepers’ day out: About 600 runs were made,of which 50% was scored by the wicketkeepers.
என் இனிய தீபாவளி நல் வாழ்த்துக்கள்


Great going!

My Match Review: Sachin! Sachin! IrFan! IrFan! Rahul Rahul! Team India Team India. We trashed Sri Lanka.

What do cricketing fans or maniacs get from these 2 games? Did it indicate anything? These 2 games makes me raise questions about Mr. Ex-Captain, for past few seasons, as a captain did he really do anything for the team or he did not bother to care? or The leaked Chappel's email did lot of good for Indian cricket?

How come a team that was in sheer disaster suddenly starts to play high level Cricket? How come a team that often struggled to maintain some consistency managed to win 2 games with authenticity? May be I am too early to celebrate or come to a conclusion, same happened against Pakistan. We won 2 and lost the rest, however this time I feel games against Sri Lanka a clear message is being sent by the new captain Dravid and the Coach. They are serious and care only about “Indian Cricket”. Few lucky Friends of mine who has Direct TV connection tells me that Indian fielding was at its best.

Various media outlets have been speculating Mohali dew conditions for past 2 days, true, during this time of the year D/N games are a mess. Like many, I was also assuming “captain who wins the toss” would bat and put a high score. Under such conditions batting first had better chance of wining.

However Dravid just did the opposite! And his decision was right on the money. In form Irfan Pathan did the magic from the word go; among Indian fast bowlers Javagal Srinath knows the knack of getting Jayasuriya out early, Jayasuriya often slashes over 3rd man, with proper line and length Srinath would often exploit this weakness, Dravid/Pathan & Co did the same, plan worked again. Probably India saved lot of runs by getting him out in the earlier overs. Pathan also got rid of Sangakara, a terrific player. I was half sleep when this happened, suddenly the commentator screamed in excitement, Dilshan was out the next ball. Sri Lankan under their new “Australian coach”, submerged deep into waters and never recovered. Pathan finished 4 for 37 runs.

Sachin in pumped up “form” and Sehwag on cards for a big score, 123 seemed too small. But knowing Indian cricket and its greatness for long now, I did have a fear. Usually in low scoring games, the game is wide open. "Wait till the fat lady sings" 2 or 3 quick wickets, Murali would eat the cake in full. And of course Indians have lost games in this fashion very many times in the past. But “Sachin” went onto score his next Fifty and more - saw “INDIA WIN THE GAME”.I hope Dravid and his men continue their aggression.

Ps: It is about time for Sachin haters to go on a long term hibernation, Alaska would be the best spot, you might have to share it with the Polar Bears or Gangully who was reported to be seen - walking on a glacier.


Sachin Inspires!

I was annoyed yesterday for not getting the game on the Dish Network. It was being shown live on Direct TV, The only person who has direct TV in my circle was my friend Vatsa, his VCR is broken! My “pulambal” reached red alert level , hence called Dish network! None had a clue. The automatic message recommended a WWF game for $45.99 instead. The only way was to get Direct TV in my home.

However as of 8.39am today, I don’t intended to get one more Dish on my roof top. Dish network though boasts about their so called “great” digital service, in reality they don’t really care about cricket, in fact about anything. They just need you to sign up for a year and keep their coffers filled very month.

The above lines are leftovers from yesterday’s pulambal’s.

Willow TV shows it on the internet for a price of $129.00; if you ask me, frankly I don’t trust my DSL connection; I feel it cannot take the load. Hence I went back to good olden days of listening to cricket commentary, Thanks to Cricinfo.org, I subscribed to their enthusiastic commentary.

Match result - India won! good start for the season, the new captain and Mr. Grumpy coach; To me I was very happy to see “my man” shine bright, from his long medical leave Sachin came back with a big bang, he sent SMS , emails, snail mail , “pura” messages to his “beloved” critics. He also sent a truck load “prasadams” to his life time devotees like me.

I had been stating this for long enough to all my friends, [most would kick me if I do it again];
Regardless of his form Sachin’s presence in the team is always a booster to the team in general.
This match once again proved my “Jalraculor” or “ChingChakular” statement; without him we know how pathetic our team played in earlier tours this year. The start he gave ensured and inspired even the patient Rahul Dravid to play aggressive cricket. Dravid played a captain’s knock of 85 in about 64 balls. This includes a six! & 8 fours; by this innings Dravid also sent messages to his critics, [yes! #include “Sriks.h”]

A pleasant surprise was IrFan Pathan, he scored 80+ and even over took the little master; he slammed 4 massive sixes as per the commentators it was something not to be missed, however as a dish network subscriber, my fate I missed a great batting display. Damn Dish Network and damn NIMBUS! And boo to BCCI;

Nagpur is known for high scores, 350 was little more than I expected. Harbajan, whose selection was also questioned, claimed 3 wickets. India won by 152 runs, a good start for the season. If I am right, this the 9th time Sachin gets out at 90’s; if he had made them all, 47 would be the magic number!...oh there I go! AGAIN Singing Sachin Praise.! Hey! What else you expect in this Blog;


T-18 the India/ Sri Lanka series

It is about T-18 for the start of the India/ Sri Lanka series; until this minute I do not know which TV is going to carry it live here in the United States. Dish network has no news, while Direct TV when I checked it last time did not have any information. I am sure some websites will carry it live; I don’t prefer to watch the game on a 19inch monitor ½ asleep.

Cricket telecast rights is the main source of revenue for the BCCI, it is some what a similar to duck that lays golden egg for the BCCI. However BCCI due to its unprofessional outfit is all set to kill this duck. I would have spent about $1500-$2000 at least for cricket till date, and it is matter of time before I stop caring to watch this live. Why can’t BCCI get their act together and make sure every crazy fan like me out there gets it live at an affordable cost? If Dish network carries it, I know they would charge a nose bleeding bundle amount. Let me keep my fingers crossed.

There were various unfair questions on Sachin’s selection for last few weeks. When it comes to Sachin, even his sick leave is treated to retirement, a pity. Here is guy who plays for the country right from 16 years and he has been playing long enough to get into some kind medical conditions. Many have forgotten this, just before Sachin went on his sick leave, he had scored a brilliant century against Pakistan.

And more over “Team India” did not do big without him also; they lost at every outing at regular intervals, in spite of juggling the captains, replacing the coach, fiddling with the batting order, replacing the straps in the pad, changing inner gloves color, adding one more helmet or change the red color of holy “kunkum” used by Gangully & Co to blue. Mmm What ever! Nothing worked till date;

Sachin being in the team is vital for others to perform well. This fact needs to be accepted! Dravid has clearly stated that he is very happy and pumped up on Sachin’s return. Indian team has to pick up their momentum and prove the fact that they are not “mere local heroes”. Greg Chappel has to do something better, else it is not only Sri Lanka who would win, his pal Gangully would come out with flying colors.

OPEN the charity organization which recently featured “Rasika” the music band out of Virginia have released a 2 set DVD that contains edited portions from the show, this can be got for a donation of $10.00 + Shipping. Please contact Kumar Thiagrajan (kumart@interamerica.com) or Chox Solaiappan (schocku@yahoo.com) to order your copies. I will try to get an audio clip from the show and upload it in my Blog soon.


H1Bee News

My interview and an article Written by Subha J. Rao appeared on "The Hindu", dated Oct 20th 2005.

Few days ago, I spoke with Neki Bedi – [BBC ASIA NETWORK] on her show called "The Drive", went live at around 4.25GMT. BBC also carried an article about the album on their technologies section. Thanks to Clarke Boyd, BBC and Subha J Rao of the Hindu to covering about this album. Clarke Boyd also did a news clip on his very popular pod cast show and which was also aired on National public Radio.



During the recently concluded the super one day series, ICC was boasting about experimenting technology for umpiring decisions. Field Umpires, if their regular pair of eyes fails to judge a decision would refer it to the third eye. This includes LBW, catches and every other decision. However in spite of 3rd eye, 4th eye and the 5th camera eyes, Ricky Ponting was trapped plumb by Ntini, other than the spectators, every other “ICC appointed” eye right royally missed it.

Most Umpires would not refer too much to the third umpire because if they start doing so for every decision, they would be mere coat hangers and a ball counter. ICC instead of wasting time on these worthless tactics, they could create measures to maintain a high level of umpiring competency and consistency. These are called “innovations” agreed but it becomes good only if they are used properly. It is like spending tons of money on an automatic motorized twin spinning damn tooth brush when you have 2 hands well intact and working to its full potential.

Murali will be playing in SCG, I think after about a decade or so. His stopped bowling in Australia after Mr. Hair called NO BALL for chucking. ICC has cleared Murali which means Mr. Hair was wrong in his initial judgment. Darrel Hair was never warned for ruling such a haste decision. However he is an Aussie hence ICC has a higher threshold for players and umpires from certain countries.

For past 2 days Media has been speculating Dravid to lead India for the Sri Lankan series. But BCCI has called it a ridiculous rumor. However the “BJ’s” are meeting in few days, they could have waited for Gangully to recover and met later this month. Looks like the speculation will come true. Sachin is back playing first class games, however he did not get any runs. Chappel has welcomed his return. Everyone wants him perform to stay in the race.

Head Line News, a news network channel run by India today/AAj Tak is now available live from India on Dish network. One week free promotional transmission is on now. The News casts are professional and as good as any news channel here. Live news! not a delayed news recording as show on Sun TV.

I watched an unbiased coverage on Headline news about the sad monster earthquake that has rattled Pakistan and parts of India. It was heart breaking and I could not take it further. When it comes to nature, human is no where. Most people who suffered this calamity were already under the poverty line had nothing for them. It is sad to see Nature being cruel to such people; it simply seized their only asset, “family and loved ones”. Hope relief efforts gets the survivors some peace of mind. More than that, at least now their government should take serious steps to protect people by enforcing rules and regulation for construction in these volatile seismic zones.

Finally, Last VijayaDasmi I officially inaugurated the recordings for H1BEES album in my studio, it is now 1 year since and I am happy to see its progress. Last week the album was featured on NPR/BBC. And many of my friends have heard it and took time to call me, thanks guys.


Game Day
Super Series Aus vs Rest of the world

ICC’s dream cricket - The Super series kicked off yesterday. Dish network had scheduled a 11.30pm start, however maintaining “their tradition” the actual telecast started only at 12.00 midnight. For 30 painstaking delayed minutes it was Kenny’ G sax! Music “Good Lord”

This game was played at the Telstra Dome, a gorgeous indoor stadium that has a floating roof and a capacity of 40,000 seats for Cricket. The capacity can be increased based on the event; it seems for a rock show they can hold up to 70,000. However the sad part was it was not even filled to its 25% capacity. Given the prelude and the hype for this game, it was a big let down by the locals. May be most preferred to go to work; but in the thin crowed I did spot Indians with giant size flags. “சங்கு சுட்டாலும் வெண்மை தரும்”

The rest of the world 11 [+ 1 super sub] line up was star studded. The Shaun Pollock was captain for the one day squad. The squad: Sehwag, Sangakkara, Kallis, Lara, Pietersen, Dravid, Flintoff, Pollock, Vettori, Muralitharan and Akhtar. Afridi was the super sub. There was a buzz in the commentary box about Andrew Flitoff. Australia had the same side except 2 new faces. Pointing won the toss and elected to bat. Dean Jones and Sunil Gavasker presented both the teams with the official cap.

I felt this through out the game. Over all the captaincy [World team] was kind of not up to the mark for the world 11. I don’t want blame Shaun Pollock right away. It is very hard to deal the chemistry of such a powerful lineup. However the basics never change, he should have got the spinners little bit earlier. Instead he continued the power play and went on with Flintoff. Flintoff was mediocre and his line & length was questionable. Gilly happily singing “apidi pOdu pOdu” whacked him around the Dome. Flint off sucked to the core. Who knows for his poor performance he would not hesitate to blame Pollock however we need to wait for his next book to know about it. Katich managed to score runs but was fragile all through. Finally Kallis got rid of Gilly.

Pointing walked in for a “Kathak Batting Fusion”. His major weakness of “shuffling” was once again exposed. If Gangu dada’s weakness is short ball, Pointing has the weakness to shuffle more than a Vegas poker dealer. Ball hit his pads more than Sangakkara’s gloves. Finally he was pinned down by the Pollock and Kallis, he lost his patience and lifted one to the roof, Lara took a great catch and the dance show thus came to an end. Martin walked in and supplied some food materials for the supper break. He was out for a Duck. In spite of good bowling by Pollock Vettori and Murali, Aussies managed to score 250.

The rest of game for rest of the world was totally out of sync. I felt like watching India playing. Other than Sangakkara no one played to their potential. At the end the powerful star studded team lost the game by 100 runs. Jack “the stubborn” Kallis took the day off. Our own “Dharmer” Dravid was out in an odd fashion while Lambasting Lara was careless. Pietersen hyped resume did not do any good, he was out LBW. Poor Afridi did not have Agarkar or Zahir to hook on to; he was out in no time. Flintoff tried to get some runs however unfortunately for him this is not England where anything over the inner circle is 6-G [granted]. This is Australia where the oval is real and he has to cover more square feet to get the maximum. He will get right sooner or later.

The world 12 fielding was also not up to the standard. Sanjay “the perfect” Majeraker mentioned that the world team did not have great fielders in the squad. This made sense. As mentioned earlier I also felt captain’s attitude makes the difference in the team constitution. I hardly saw any body language from Pollock. The guys were playing because they were asked to play. The whole squad lacked the spirit to perform. Pollock also cannot do much, given their merits it is hard for him to scream at a world class player.

Bottom line, McGrath and Lee were the main force that won the game for the Aussies. Their batting is still fragile. This victory will boost Aussie confidence and can also increase their ego levels. We need to wait and watch the second game; I hope the world team will have its chemistry in place. For now Aussies are one up.


GOLU 2005
by Jayashree Srikanth and Sriya Srikanth

Stage 1: The steps are set. The concrete stones are placed near the base in order to raise the PKL to 2000LBS. [PKL=Playful Kids Load]

Stage 2: The rough looking Steps are given a clean set of dress. Carpet is protected with papers. The left and right will feature miniatures city /village and a music hall.

Stage 3: The steps are being filled.

Stage 4: Three zones are almost ready

Stage 5: Let there be Light

Stage 6: let there be some more light

Miniature Town Ship

(Aerial view)

Miniature Stage


The Weekend

After about 2 months, this was the first weekend I spent at home. However 70% of the weekend was spent on helping my wife and my daughter in setting up their Golu 2005. They have 7 steps and 2 miniature townships built. They had got various miniature city and village props from Chennai. Golu 2005 officially kicks of tonight. I will upload some pictures once the full setup is done.
Flintoff's "Alley Sonata" [சந்துல சிந்து] came to an official end when Paul Russel, Chief of the Glamorgan county team for which Ganguly played this season categorically stated that “Ganguly is an outstanding professional who settled into the team and worked hard on and off the field”. He also adds that Gangully always came to team practice in time and did whatever he was told to do so. He expressed surprise about Flintoff's critical remarks in his autobiography. In fact, the team has the opposite image of Ganguly of what Flintoff has written. Bottom line, there was no hint of anything of what Flintoff has said. He was very friendly with the other team-members and used to often go out with them for dinner. I think Flintoff instead of using the current circumstance to sell his Book needs to get away from this cheap tactics and get a life.
The World Series cricket starts this week, Dish Network will be is bringing it live here in the US. The charge will be around $65.00.
Sachin recovered from his injury and announced that he is fit to play. He will be playing the Champion trophy. I happen to catch his interview on news broadcast. He was in his usual spirit. I wish he gets back into action quickly. Team India needs his services badly.
Rest of the weekend went on watching the NFL. Vikings the team I support, sucked to the core and lost to Atlanta; however losers of the week award goes to Kansas City Chiefs. In fact today we a new addendum released for the meaning for the word Losers
Losers: One that fails to win: the losers of the game.
a. One who takes loss in a specified way: (a)A graceful loser; (b)A poor loser (c) The Kansas city Chief ‘s way.
Philly Eagles came back from an 18 point deficit to win the game. In 3rd quarter Chief was shutdown. Something similar to Indian cricket team where Sehwag and Sachin give a great start but the rest “rests in peace”,
Good day.