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  #1  
Old March 13, 2011, 04:03 PM
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Default Nostalgic piece : The day Gordon Greenidge cried



Akram Khan is regarded by many as the best Bangladesh batsman ever © Getty Images
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Features : The Khans of Chittagong
Players/Officials: Akram Khan
Matches: Bangladesh v Netherlands at Chittagong | Bangladesh v Netherlands at Kuala Lumpur | Bangladesh v Netherlands at Nairobi (Prem)
Series/Tournaments: ICC Cricket World Cup
Teams: Bangladesh | Netherlands



"Gordon Greenidge cried the most. Everybody was crying, he couldn't hold himself back."
***
Bangladesh and Netherlands might have played each other only once in international cricket, that too in Glasgow, but they share a bittersweet history; a history of tears of anguish and tears of joy for Bangladesh. Back in 1994, and then in 1997, the two countries were involved in two matches, which though not recognised as internationals, were key to the future of cricket in Bangladesh. Those were in the days of the ICC Trophy, where the Associates take part in tense contests - a tension followers of Test-playing nations can never truly appreciate, and that includes me - just to make it to the World Cup. Just to let the world know they exist.
Akram Khan, arguably the greatest Bangladesh batsman ever, was involved in both those seminal matches against Netherlands. He is a national selector now, and often comes to watch the Bangladesh nets. On his way to ground on Sunday, on the eve of a crucial match against Netherlands, all he could think of was those two emotion-filled matches, emotion that perhaps surpasses what we have seen in Bangladesh this World Cup.



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  #2  
Old March 13, 2011, 04:14 PM
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Thanks for sharing, Miraz bhai.

Nice article. Puruno din er kotha abar mone pore gelo..
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Old March 13, 2011, 04:37 PM
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wow! Didn't know half of that

Thanks alot Miraz bhai for sharing
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Old March 13, 2011, 04:47 PM
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amader na kante hoilei baachi.
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Old March 13, 2011, 04:58 PM
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Misleading article about the net run rate and time wasting bit. All of us very well knew exactly what was happening! Akram Khan was wasting time because we were way behind on the DL method! S Mongia clearly doesn't know what he is talking about and I don't blame him because he wasn't the one glued to the radio set that day. Really frustrating to read a tampered version of the historic match. I wrote a whole article about that historic match and just cannot possibly explain it again! Extremely frustrating!

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Old March 13, 2011, 05:07 PM
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Thank you. I remember those days of following the team over the radio. I think those days it was mostly cricket fans who followed the matches. Now, even non followers are forced to get in on the action.
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Old March 13, 2011, 05:09 PM
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True. We knew exactly what needed to be done. Still, Monga has gotten a lot better over the last week or so. His glee after the WI debacle was ugly.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Shehwar
Misleading article about the net run rate and time wasting bit. All of us very well knew exactly what was happening! Akram Khan was wasting time because we were way behind on the DL method! S Mongia clearly doesn't know what he is talking about and I don't blame him because he wasn't the one glued to the radio set that day. Really frustrating to read a tampered version of the historic match. I wrote a whole article about that historic match and just cannot possibly explain it again! Extremely frustrating!

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Old March 13, 2011, 05:34 PM
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I was in school, and I'd taken my pocket radio along with me. Listening to it in one ear through every class after tiffin break. Huddled together with the others, tense beyond anything else. We got damn lucky due to the rain and Akram taking his time that day!

We had some make up classes that day if I remember correctly. Or maybe I'd gone to coaching. But definitely had classes that day and heard the game through that little pocket transistor and through the car radio.
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Old March 13, 2011, 05:45 PM
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I won an art competition that day. Easiest piece of cake I've ever had. Just sprayed some color on paper and left in a hurry to join daddy to listen to the radio. They made 180 something and we figured we'd lose. When we started batting, it didn't look any better. 15/4 and it started raining. Depressed, I went to take a rare afternoon nap.

Woke up to the victory chants of the old man in the other room. From there on, beating Scotland in the semis to make it to the WC was another piece of cake, this time one that I had to share with the whole nation.
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Old March 13, 2011, 05:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shehwar
Misleading article about the net run rate and time wasting bit. All of us very well knew exactly what was happening! Akram Khan was wasting time because we were way behind on the DL method!
That is correcto. If he hadn't, play would have continued and we'd run the risk of losing more wickets before play got called off temporarily.
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Old March 13, 2011, 06:26 PM
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There should be a movie about that inning. It had all the ups and downs of an epic. It had the depressing history of previous failures. It changed the trajectory completely. At the least, a book should be written about it.
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  #12  
Old March 13, 2011, 06:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tehsin
True. We knew exactly what needed to be done. Still, Monga has gotten a lot better over the last week or so. His glee after the WI debacle was ugly.
I know! This is what really happened!! :

' ... The same day Ireland defeated favorites Netherlands by 5 runs (D/L method) to cause a massive upset. In our second match we came up against the Irish. Shanto(Hasibul Hossain) was at his brilliant best as we bowled them out for 129 with Shanto(Hasibul Hossain) claiming 3-29 and with us cruising at 24-0 on the 7th over the heavens opened up. An almost certain victory was denied. The match got abandoned and we had to share a point with Ireland , who by virtue of this 1 point were almost guaranteed to go through from this group. This put us in a very tricky situation going into the last match against favorites Netherlands . Ireland already had 1 win (against Netherlands ) and one no result and was always going to beat Hong Kong and hence would go through from the this group. With both us and Netherlands having 1 win, all on a sudden this was a must win match for both the sides. We were all so anxious heading into that match! We had been in a similar situation last time around against Kenya and we all know what happened there. We started off quite well and restricted them to 171 all out. We started our chase and in no time were looking down the barrel! 1-7, 2-7, 3-13 and 4-15. We were listening in disbelief as the Dutch seamers were ripping the heart out of our batting order. At 4-15 I think I had never ever felt worse in my life. We were still unbeaten in the tournament and were having a fairy tale run and one rained out match against the Irish had almost ruined everything. Akram Khan and Nannu(Minhazul Abedin) were batting in the middle and till this day I don’t think I have prayed and promised to the Almighty as much as I did for those next few hours. They slowly started building a partnership and then came another heart-stopping moment when it started to rain. We were way behind in the D/L method and only 2 more deliveries were required for this to be a legitimate match after which if the players went off the field the Dutch team would be declared winners by virtue of D/L method! Akram Khan showed immense maturity and started wasting time in all possible manners. He tied his shoelaces, changed his helmet and did everything possible to deny those 2 deliveries being bowled as he knew once that happens it would virtually be all over if it continues raining and the Dutch team would be reluctant to return to the field. Where as if this was an abandoned match, Bangladesh would go through. It worked! And if I remember correctly the players went off the field with 1 ball still remaining for it to be a legitimate match! Those were the longest few minutes of my life at that point. The play resumed again and Bangladesh were set a revised target of 141 in 33 overs. Nannu(Minhazul Abedin) got run out leaving us on 77-5. and when Enamul Haque went to leave us on 86-6 we were pretty much dead and out! Akram though was still fighting. He had a date with destiny. Saiful Islam came in and just gave him enough support by hanging in there while he single handedly took on all corners. Saiful departed with us 6 runs away from the target but Akram Khan was there till the end. He delivered when it mattered the most! The man single handedly took us to the semi-final of the ICC Trophy with an innings of a life time. That 68 not out is still after all these years arguably the greatest ever knock played by a Bangladeshi. The magnitude of that innings was epic and everlasting. Bangladesh cricket would not be where it is today if Akram Khan had not rescued us from that situation. The situation, the pressure, and the expectations – he took on everything on his able shoulders and took us to safety. If ever there was a captain’s knock, that was it! We never looked back from there on ... '

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  #13  
Old March 13, 2011, 07:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AsifTheManRahman
I won an art competition that day. Easiest piece of cake I've ever had. Just sprayed some color on paper and left in a hurry to join daddy to listen to the radio. They made 180 something and we figured we'd lose. When we started batting, it didn't look any better. 15/4 and it started raining. Depressed, I went to take a rare afternoon nap.

Woke up to the victory chants of the old man in the other room. From there on, beating Scotland in the semis to make it to the WC was another piece of cake, this time one that I had to share with the whole nation.
Bhaia, what we all wanna know.... DID YOU CRY?
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  #14  
Old March 13, 2011, 07:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ZeeshanM
Bhaia, what we all wanna know.... DID YOU CRY?
Not at all. And I didn't cry after the England win either.

Now if we win the WC, you never know...
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Old March 13, 2011, 07:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AsifTheManRahman
Not at all. And I didn't cry after the England win either.

Now if we win the WC, you never know...
When that happens I will then look forward to the bangla natok like comment: "aha chokhe money hoy ekta poka dhuklo...."
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Old March 13, 2011, 07:51 PM
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On topic: Insightful article. My memory is not fresh about Akram Khan's batting and it was a revelation to know that he is 'arguably' the best ever. Calls for a poll thread though.
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  #17  
Old March 13, 2011, 08:41 PM
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very nostalgic indeed.... almost brings tears to my eyes now as I read... ahh those days of following the match on radio, trying to imagine the play in our head while listening to Khoda Bakhsh & Jaffrullah Sharafat....


"We all talk about the pressure of expectation on the current team, but at least they know they will be playing international cricket even if they lose. They knew they would be playing international cricket even when they went 47 games without a win. The class of 1997, though, even after having gone unbeaten in that tournament until then, didn't know if they would ever get to play if they lost that day...."

this is very very true... and our new generation players should remember this before downplaying the achievements of the 'Class of 1997'.

This following comment posted on that article is interesting as well:

Posted by gmaurup on (March 13 2011, 21:01 PM GMT)
Yes, 'this is the single most important innings in the history of Bangladesh cricket', and will ever be even if Bangladesh wins the World Cup some day on the bat of someone else. I think, we read some other version, that the dutch were reluctant to start when everyone was back on ground... some one feigned a slip on the outfield... and bangladesh team players and journalists gave hand in removing water from the ground as the ground stuff were indifferent to moving water and get things going . I have a very sharp memory... would love to see if anyone else supports my memory . I purchased 12 newspapers the next day (that was the trend back then as wins were so sparsely placed ) , alas none are kept right now
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Old March 13, 2011, 09:55 PM
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That was the most important match of Bangladesh cricket so far. It was a must needed win after we did everything right to be in the world cup. After those early wickets I stopped following the commentary (in the radio, if i recall correctly); but then I was pleasantly surprised that we won.

Akram's 68 not out is, in my book, easily the most important innings any Bangladeshi has ever played.
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Old March 13, 2011, 11:30 PM
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Next day was one of the big exam, Petroleum Engineering I think. Me and my younger brother were on the very noisy radio commentrary and my mom was asking me to go back to study every five minutes.
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Old March 14, 2011, 06:40 AM
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Default The day Bangladesh made Greenidge cry for joy

"Gordon Greenidge cried the most. Everybody was crying, he couldn't hold himself back."

Bangladesh and Netherlands might have played each other only once in international cricket - in Glasgow at that - but they share a bittersweet history; a history of tears of anguish and tears of joy for Bangladesh. Back in 1994, and then in 1997, the two countries were involved in two matches, which though not recognised as internationals, were key to the future of cricket in Bangladesh. Those were in the days of the ICC Trophy, where the Associates take part in tense contests - a tension followers of Test-playing nations can never truly appreciate, and that includes me - just to make it to the World Cup. Just to let the world know they exist.

Akram Khan, arguably the greatest entertainer to play for Bangladesh, was involved in both those seminal matches against Netherlands. He is a national selector now, and often comes to watch the Bangladesh nets. On his way to the ground on Sunday, on the eve of a crucial match against Netherlands, all he could think of was those two emotion-filled games - emotion that perhaps surpasses what we have seen in Bangladesh this World Cup.

In Nairobi in 1994, Bangladesh had restricted Netherlands to 205. Understandably, the coach, Mohinder Amarnath, then told them not to take any risks while chasing and just to knock the runs down. Bangladesh took the advice too seriously, as Akram remembers, and it turned out to be "choddo over, baro run [fourteen overs, 12 runs]." It sounds funny now, but it was a huge setback. Bangladesh ended up losing by 47 runs.

Zimbabwe had been granted Test status, thus opening up another slot among the Associates for the first large World Cup, to be played in 1996. Three teams were to qualify from the ICC Trophy, and Bangladesh were the favourites. Thanks to that defeat, though, Netherlands usurped Bangladesh.

Akram and Bangladesh were inconsolable then. "Bahut takleef hua tha [It hurt us a lot]," he says, "that we didn't qualify for the 1996 World Cup. We had got all sorts of help from India, Pakistan and Sri Lanka. They all helped us with the infrastructure and facilities. They used to send A teams. We thought we had let them down, our country down, everybody down."

Three years later Bangladesh went into another ICC Trophy, this time in Kuala Lumpur, as the favourites. They had a strong side, so strong they played the same XI throughout the tournament. The matches were covered live on radio, and the whole nation was hooked. They went unbeaten through the tournament, but rain was cruel to them. When they had bowled Ireland out for 129 in a league game, they had to settle for shared points because of rain. That left them in a must-win situation in their last league game against Netherlands at the Rubber Research Institute in Kuala Lumpur.

Bangladesh bowled Netherlands out for 171, and they were just one solid chase short of going through to the semi-finals. However, after having gone unbeaten for seven games, they found themselves at 15 for 4. The dream was crashing. This would be too big a heartbreak. The rain arrived again, this time as the saviour. Or so it seemed at that point.

Akram and Minhajul Abedin then put together a partnership. Abedin, a wristy batsman, also came from Chittagong, like Akram. The two street-smart cricketers not only got runs, they indulged in some time wasting too: asking for a helmet during an over, fiddling with other equipment, doing whatever they could to delay things. Arguments ensued. Akram now smiles and says, "I did some bad things. Not good."

"We thought if we got away with one point from that game, we would qualify for the semi-final," Akram says. "But when we came back, the match referee told us we had to win the game. We were stunned."

This is where emotion makes the story hazy. All the journalists, the team themselves, and the fans present there, agree with this version: that when Bangladesh came off they thought a draw would be enough, but learned to their horror that nothing less than a win would do.

That does not sound entirely accurate because Bangladesh went into that game with three points and Netherlands with one. Ireland had already qualified with five points. So a no-result would have taken Bangladesh to four and Netherlands would have been stuck at two. A defeat for Bangladesh, though, would have tied Netherlands at three points, in which case Netherlands would have advanced based on the head-to-head.

There are two plausible explanations for the delaying tactics Bangladesh employed and the celebrations that greeted the rain. Bangladesh may have realised that with the partnership between Akram and Abedin, they were ahead of the Duckworth-Lewis par score, and by slowing the game down they were just ensuring that lead. However, just before they came off, Abedin was run out, which could have pushed them just behind on the reckoning, which would have meant they would lose if no further play was possible.

Also D/L was a new beast back then, and perhaps Bangladesh didn't realise they had already played the minimum number of overs required to constitute a game and were now going to lose.

Then again, perhaps the version accepted in Bangladesh is correct, and this conjecture is merely conjecture. It's all trivial, though. What is important is that the whole of Bangladesh, glued to the radio, was praying for rain, and once it stopped play, they celebrated.

Then came the news that this wasn't good enough for them to qualify. The news was relayed on radio. Everybody who prayed for rain was now praying for the resumption of the game. "We worried about our futures," Akram says. "All negative thoughts came to our mind. The failure in 1994. And now we thought we might never be able to play international cricket.

"Woh jumme ka din tha [It was a Friday]. A lot of Bengalis come to work in Malaysia. They all turned up at the ground. Everybody started praying. Luckily the rain stopped and the play resumed and we had a revised target."

Akram then produced an innings on which Bangladesh cricket stands today, as anybody in the country will tell you. Those who were present there say it was a chanceless innings, with no sense of panic or hurry. "I believed if I stayed there till the end, we would win this," Akram says. "Nannu [Abedin] was a vital player. He had performed well in domestic cricket, and I got a partnership with him and then one with Saiful Islam. In the end I stayed not out."

That kicked off wild celebrations. Athar Ali Khan, who opened the batting in that game, says it was the same as what we have seen on the streets of Dhaka and Chittagong this year after the national team's wins over England and Ireland. "My body was draped in the Bangladesh national flag, and we didn't leave the ground for a long, long time."

Akram says everybody cried that day. The journalists, and their friends, say they cried too. "Gordon [Greenidge, their coach] cried the most. Everybody was crying, he couldn't hold himself back."

Gordon Greenidge crying. Just imagine a win that makes Greenidge cry; a man who had come from a different country, a different culture. The owner of one of the fiercest square-cuts ever seen, the man with the double-century on one leg, the man whose image first comes to mind when the words "beware the wounded batsman" are said; Greenidge cried after that win. That's how much it meant to the team.

I ask Akram if he agrees with what everyone tells me. Was this the single most important innings in the history of Bangladesh cricket? He pauses. Says yes. Then laughs. Says yes again. It cannot be denied. For because of that innings, Bangladesh played the semi-final, then the final, then the World Cup, where they beat Pakistan and got Test status. If they had lost on that jumme ka din, there would have been no World Cup, and who knows how long they would have had to wait to qualify for a World Cup.

We all talk about the pressure of expectation on the current team, but at least they know they will be playing international cricket even if they lose. They knew they would be playing international cricket even when they went 47 games without a win. The class of 1997, though, even after having gone unbeaten in that tournament until then, didn't know if they would ever get to play if they lost that day. It wasn't quite a Messerschmitt up the arse, but surely Keith Miller wouldn't have scoffed if Akram told him he was under pressure that day.

http://www.espncricinfo.com/magazine...ry/506090.html

an excelent article by Sidharth Monga
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  #21  
Old March 14, 2011, 07:04 AM
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That day !!
How would we forget !!!
Akram Khan played arguably the most important and greatest knock in the history of Bangladesh Cricket.
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Old March 14, 2011, 07:48 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ammark
I was in school, and I'd taken my pocket radio along with me. Listening to it in one ear through every class after tiffin break. Huddled together with the others, tense beyond anything else. We got damn lucky due to the rain and Akram taking his time that day!

We had some make up classes that day if I remember correctly. Or maybe I'd gone to coaching. But definitely had classes that day and heard the game through that little pocket transistor and through the car radio.
Your post brought back old memories..........those days of 1997 ICC trophy and taking the pocket radio to school and being glued to it in between classes - all that passion and desperation to qualify for the world cup! It's taken a while but we have come a long way!!
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Old March 14, 2011, 08:11 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rabz
That day !!
How would we forget !!!
Akram Khan played arguably the most important and greatest knock in the history of Bangladesh Cricket.


Yes he did.
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Old March 14, 2011, 08:24 AM
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Aaah That Match..I remember going to a "Anondo Misil" right after that match. I remember Shamim Chowdhury was giving commentary in Bangla. Jafarullah Sharaft was so emotional.. That match was so intense. And I believe Saiful was the man behind the scene. Had he not supported Akram the way he did, we wouldnt have won that match.
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Old March 14, 2011, 08:44 AM
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That innings of Akram Khan; can't be described in any words.

There are two kinds of people, one who had the opportunity of following it live and the others are those who were unfortunate to miss it. I belong to the first group. You needed to experience that feelings of that moment.
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