Fruit on rails

A collection of picture of stations of the Indian Railways whose names involve fruit:

SitaphalMandi_Railway_StationNarangiSantragachi

There is Mango, a suburb of Jamshedpur, which does not have a station. As Robert Vadra said, there is no space for the mango man in a banana republic.

Take a closer look at the sign for Sitafal Mandi in Hyderabad. It appears to be one of the old signs from the time of the Nizam’s State Railway, with the Hindi inscription added later.

One wonders how the citizens of Nagpur allowed a much smaller town to grab the title of Orange City.

And Amla may not be named after the fruit but is supposedly an acronym for “Ammunition Land”, where a large military storage facility exists.

Afterthought-Prior to partition, Afghanistan used to export fruits to different parts of India by train. These fruit trains usually started at Chaman (a railhead to the north of Quetta), travelled down the Bolan Pass and made their way to faraway places.

 

 

 

 

 

Demonetization meets cricket

Here we have a list of players with the highest batting averages (with a minimum of 20 innings batted). This is as on 23 Nov 2016.hs-averages-nov-2016

We all know who is No 1, but the No 2 position has changed hands now. Perhaps the No 2 will not play too many Tests in future, so he may maintain his position.

Now see this chart of the rupee-dollar exchange rate:

https://in.finance.yahoo.com/echarts?s=USDINR%3DX#symbol=USDINR=X;range=1y

A snapshot of the 6-month graph on the evening of 24 Nov 2016, when it was hitting new highs:

inrusd-chart

As you can see, this rate has gone well beyond the averages of Pollock and Voges. Let us hope it is not trying to reach Bradman’s average.

 

Spotlight on train disaster near Pokhrayan

The rail disaster involving the 19231 Indore-Rajendra Nagar (Patna) Express may well be the worst railway accident in India in several years. As I write this, the death toll has crossed 130. Here is the very basic information put out by the concerned zone (North Central Railway):

http://www.safety.indianrail.gov.in/sims/viewPublicInformation.action;jsessionid=zWOAqhsYgbGjIRyP0QZvmcOLGPzwD98YlnRGQYOyrPatB-bjyfg1!9620467?id=20161113001

The accident site comes under Jhansi division of NCR whose HQ is at Allahabad. It was earlier on Central Railway.

The location is between Pokhrayan and Malasa stations on the Jhansi-Kanpur section. It would be about 45 km south-west of Kanpur Central station and 175 km north-east of Jhansi. Though not a trunk line, it has heavy passenger traffic with numerous trains from southern and western India to Kanpur, Lucknow and beyond. The site falls in Kanpur Dehat district.

Pokhrayan and Malasa can be seen on the map here:

https://www.google.co.in/maps/place/Kanpur,+Uttar+Pradesh/@26.3286985,80.0379633,11z/data=!4m5!3m4!1s0x399c4770b127c46f:0x1778302a9fbe7b41!8m2!3d26.449923!4d80.3318736

However, it appears that Pukhrayan is the more common spelling of the town.

A list of accidents with a death roll of over 100 since 2000

(This is from memory, so there may be minor inaccuracies):

2002: Near Gaya, 116 killed in wrecking of Howrah-New Delhi Rajdhani.

2005: Near Hyderabad, 116 killed as passenger train plunges into flood waters in Nalgonda district.

2006: 7 bomb blasts on WR locals in Mumbai result is the deaths of at least 186.

2010: Near Kharagpur: 150 killed as a goods train collided with coaches of the Howrah-Mumbai Jnaneshwari Express, which had been derailed due to sabotage.

(It is also noted that some false reports of major disasters in the 2000s have been entered in Wikipedia, with no reference. I will have to clean them up).

Here is the story of the ill-fated train’s trip:

pokhrayan-accident-tt

It can be seen that the last scheduled stop was at Orai, about 50 km short of the accident site. The route continues beyond Kanpur via Lucknow, Faizabad, Varanasi and Mughalsarai.

As to causes of the accident-all which can be said at the moment is that there could have been a defect in the tracks, or the loco, or rolling stock, or possibly a combination of these. Apart from tampering with the tracks, rail fractures and fractures of welded joints have been observed as causes of major derailments in recent years.

While there have been a number of incidents of sabotage of tracks in recent years, they have usually been in areas where extremist groups are active. That is not the case here. Apart from extremist sabotage, over the past 50 years there have been at least a couple of cases where disgruntled railway employees have caused major accidents by tampering with tracks.

Tests between Pakistan and the West Indies-2

Continuing the review. Hope you have seen the first part.

Looking at fielding:

Dismissals (10 and above):

pak-wi-fielding

Imtiaz Ahmed has the most stumpings (8), Alexander the most catches by a keeper (25) and Viv Richards the most catches by a non-keeper (23) followed by Greenidge with 19. No current players here other than Younis Khan.

Most catches in an innings (4 and above):

pak-wi-innings-field

No recent instances. The much-maligned Kamran Akmal did do his share of catching.

Most catches in a match (5 and above):

pak-wi-match-field

As above, no instance after 2005 but Kamran Akmal tops the list. Note Imtiaz Ahmed’s consistency.

Highest dismissal rates (Minimum 20 innings, all instances):

pak-wi-dis-rate

Oddly enough no specialist wicketkeeper appears here as none of them played enough. Richards, Majid and Richardson top the list. You can however see their dismissal rates in the first table above, with Kamran Akmal having  a rate of 2.777 in 9 innings.

All-round performance (overall):

pak-wi-ar

Only these two played enough to meet this modest target.

All-round performance in a match (50 and 5wi):

pak-wi-match-ar

Gayle’s forgotten all-round ability appears here.

Tests between Pakistan and the West Indies-1

Better late than never. Here is a summary of all Tests between these countries including the recently concluded series in the UAE. A point of interest was that the West Indies recorded their first victory over Pakistan in neutral Tests, having lost 2-0 in 2002 and now 2-1. We see that they had lost all 4 neutral Tests against Pakistan till then.

49 Tests have been played between these countries. Pakistan now lead 18-16 with 15 draws. A summary:

                    Pak      WI       Draw  Total

In Pak         9              4          8           21

In WI           5             11          7           23

Neutral       4               1         0             5

Total          18            16      15           49

We now look at batting:

Most runs (500 and more):

pak-wi-runs

M. Yousuf has the most centuries (7) followed by Inzamam and Lara with 4 apiece

M. Yousuf also has the most 50+ scores with 10, while four others have made 9.

And M. Yousuf has scored the most runs in this series though he played in  a relatively small number of Tests.

Highest innings (150 and above):

pak-wi-hs

The top score here was the world record Test score for almost 40 years and strangely enough, Gary Sobers’s maiden Test hundred. In the same series, Pakistan recorded their highest score of this series which was one of the longest in all first-class cricket. It is still Pakistan’s highest Test score and the longest innings in all Tests (though no longer the first-class record).

Azhar Ali is the only current player here.

Highest batting averages (20 or more innings, all instances):

pak-wi-avg

Wasim Raja tops this rather surprisingly. But heavy scorers such as M. Yousuf (101.16 in 14 innings), Sobers (89.45 in 13 innings) and Hanif (73.60 in 11 innings) did not play enough to feature here. See the first table above for their averages.

Mention must also be made of Kraigg Brathwaite’s batting feat (which deserves a post to itself): https://abn397.wordpress.com/2016/11/04/kraigg-brathwaites-unique-feat/

Now for bowling:

Most wickets (20 and more):

pak-wi-bowling

The top few names are as expected, while newcomers such as Bishoo and Yasir Shah are climbing rapidly.

Imran has the most fivers (6), followed by 4 each by Akram and Walsh. No one has taken more than one tenner.

Best innings bowling (6 or more wickets):

pak-wi-innings-bowl

Bishoo’s 8-49 was the second best in this series, though his team did not win that match. The only other current player here is Yasir Shah at the bottom, though at least his team did win.

Best match bowling (9 or more wickets):

pak-wi-match-bowl

Bishoo and Yasir Shah also appear here.

Best bowling average (Minimum 2000 balls, all instances):

pak-wi-bowl-avg

Current players will take a while to reach here.

It can be seen that the best economy rates are 2.05 by Gibbs and 2.36 by Fazal. The best strike rates are 39.6 by Younis and 41.7 by Croft.

To be continued.

Kraigg Brathwaite’s unique feat

In the excitement over the West Indies finally winning a Test against a “respected” opponent, an unique record was overlooked. KC Brathwaite became the only opener to remain unbeaten in both innings of a Test.

The scorecard: http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/engine/match/1050233.html

You would expect that this would have happened before, but it hasn’t.

kc-brathwaite

The nearest equivalent I could think of was Desmond Haynes who opened and was last out in both innings in this test-though he had the mortifying experience of seeing his side lose the Test (and series) by one wicket: http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/engine/match/63259.html

Other points of interest: Kraigg is one of the few who have scored over 200 runs in a Test in two unbeaten innings:

kcb-2

He is also one of 28 to have scored unbeaten 50-plus scores in each innings-which Chanderpaul was fond of doing. GC Grant and Azhar Mahmood achieved this on debut. Aravinda de Silva remains the only one to make two unbeaten centuries in a Test. Other surprising entries in this list include Wriddhiman Saha:

kcb-3

Probably Kraigg deserves a little calypso in his honour.

(Thanks to Abhishek Risbud for suggesting this potential record).