Unusual station signs

Here we look at some stations and station signs in India which have something unique or nearly unique about them.

This idea occurred following the announcement of this new station:

Bhubaneswar New

There are numerous stations with the prefix New, especially in the NF zone. But this is the first station name where New is a suffix.

And there is only one important station which has Old as a prefix:

Old Malda

“Old” is transcribed into Hindi and Bengali and not translated.

(There is also an Old Sachivalaya Halt on the Patna-Digha branch. The line’s future is uncertain. There is a better-known Sachivalaya Halt on the Patna-Danapur section.)

Similarly, we look at the points of the compass. At the center there are several stations which have Central as a suffix. But none have Central as a prefix.

We have better luck with North as a prefix:

North Lakhimpur

Interesting that North is transcribed into Hindi but the Assamese word “Uttor” is used.

None for East or South either. For West, we have this one near Kozhikode:

West Hill

Here, West and Hill have been transcribed into Hindi and Malayalam and not translated.

There used to be a Westpoint Halt near Darjeeling listed in older timetables. That used to serve a school with this name.

Finally, this station in the Hyderabad area:

Sanathnagar

There is nothing unusual about the station sign. The station itself is unusual, as a large number of EMUs of the Hyderabad MMTS do not stop there, but many regular passenger trains and a couple of expresses do stop there.

The reason is not very clear. It has been around for a long time and has a large goods yard. Maybe because road access was difficult, a new MMTS station was built at Bharatnagar about 1 km away which is served by the EMUs but not by other passenger trains. This is probably unique in India as a station which EMUs skip but where long-distance trains have a stoppage.

And there is something od(d) about this station, which is one of the two stations in India (along with Ib) which have two-letter names. It was listed as Ode in older timetables.

Od

Note the famous railway writer Vimlesh Chandra in this picture.

Review of England-India ODIs-2018

The 3-match series in July 2018 was won 2-1 by England. We now look at the complete records of ODIs played between these teams.

Overall record:

Overall

Note India’s strong home advantage, though England also lead on their home grounds. But India have a strong overall lead.

Batting records:

Most runs (750 and above):

Runs-750

It will be interesting to see if Dhoni catches up with Yuvraj. Others such as Kohli will take a while.

Yuvraj has the most centuries (4). For scores above 50, Tendulkar and Raina have 12 (but note that Raina has only one century and 11 scores between 50 and 99).

Highest innings (110 and above):

Innings-110

Only RG Sharma and Root figure from current players.

Highest batting averages (minimum 20 innings, all instances):

Bat avg

Azharuddin is much ahead of the others. Dhoni, Kohli and Raina are there from the current players.

Highest strike rates (minimum 500 balls faced, 80.00):

Batting SR (80)

Sehwag and Yuvraj lead. Dravid scored too slowly to make this list.

Bowling records:

Most wickets (20 and above):

Most wickets-20

Anderson is closely followed by several others.

Best innings bowling (includes all figures of 5wi and above):

Bowling-5wi

Kuldeep Yadav is just behind the record holder Ashish Nehra,

Best bowling averages (Minimum 1000 balls, all instances):

Bowling average

Headed by Srinath, with current players Jadeja and Ashwin close behind. Kapil has the best economy rate (3.76) and Jadeja the best strike rate (29.7).

Fielding records:

Most dismissals (15 and above):

Most dism

Dhoni is far above the rest with 55, with Collingwood  having the best (24) for non-keepers.

Best innings dismissals (4 and above):

Innings dis-4

Led by Dhoni. Non-keepers have less than 4 in an innings.

Best dismissal rate (minimum 20 innings, 0.400):

Dis rate above 0.4

Dhoni is far ahead of the rest. Azharuddin has the best for non-keepers.

All-round performances:

Overall (see criteria):

AR-overall

Only Flintoff qualifies.

Match performance (minimum 40 runs and 4 wickets):

AR-match

Yuvraj’s performance would be the best.

 

 

 

The Aum Shinkyo cult and Sarin revisited

The Aum Shinkyo cult was supposed to be a forgotten footnote of history. Until news items like these appeared recently: https://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-44962581

Interesting that Japan took 23 years to execute the persons behind their worst domestic terrorist attack.

One often wondered if there is any connection between Sarin nerve gas and India. Fortunately or unfortunately, there is not. Read the first paragraph here:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sarin#History

While the Nazis did not get round to using it, it was found useful by the governments of Iraq and Syria. Among terrorists, only Aum Shinkyo got round to using it effectively.

A sidelight: One of the Iraqi proponents of weapons like these was nicknamed “Chemical Ali”: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ali_Hassan_al-Majid

As a counterpart to this, the Iraqi government’s PR man during the 2003 war was given the title “Comical Ali”: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Muhammad_Saeed_al-Sahhaf

He is still around, unlike his semi-namesake who was hanged in 2010. Perhaps Comical Ali has a more auspicious name than Lord Haw Haw, who was hanged by the British government after WW2.

 

 

Best bowling figures in defeats

Keshav Maharaj’s 9-129 and match figures of 12-283 (along with Theunis de Bruyn’s maiden century) were South Africa’s only saving grace in their loss in the second Test at Colombo (SSC). We now look at the best bowling figures by losing teams in Tests.

Best innings bowling in defeats (including all instances of 8wi and above):

Best innings bowling in defeats

Maharaj’s 9-129 is the fourth-best performance here in a list headed by Kapil Dev’s 9-69. It may be recalled that Noreiga’s 9-95 is the best for WI in all Tests, and that it came in India’s first Test win over the West Indies.

The previous best for South Africa was Hugh Tayfield’s 7-23 in 1950, which can also be seen above.

Valentine and Krejza were making their debuts. Krezja played only in one more Test. Valentine made his debut with Ramadhin, and the two ensured that England lost the remaining 3 Tests of the series.

Best match bowling in defeats (including all instances of 11wm and above):

Best match bowling in defeats

Here Maharaj’s 12-283 is somewhat down the list which is headed by Srinath’s 13-132 in 1999. The previous best for South Africa was AE Hall’s 11-112 in 1923, which can also be seen above.

Krejza, Hall, Burke and Valentine were making their debuts. Only Valentine got an extended run.

Nawaz Sharif’s cricketing career

As this is being written, it appears likely that Imran Khan Niazi will be the next Prime Minister of Pakistan. While he may be described as one of Pakistan’s finest cricket captains, it is an open question whether he will be successful as a PM.

His adversary Nawaz Sharif was a cricketer of a sort-though he played only one first-class match in which he scored a duck and did not bowl or take a catch. The summary of his career is here:

http://www.espncricinfo.com/pakistan/content/player/42259.html

If one wants to find out details of the match he played in, it is not in Cricinfo but can be found in other sources such as www.cricketarchive.com

I am giving the link for the scorecard here, though it will probably not be visible unless you have paid the subscription for access to the site.

http://cricketarchive.com/Archive/Scorecards/33/33876.html

This match was between Railways (NS’s team) and PIA “B” at Karachi (Gymkhana Ground) on 10/11 Dec 1973. Unusually for a 4-day match, it was concluded in two days when Railways won by an innings and 68 runs. This was a quarter-final of the BCCP Patron’s Trophy. Railways went on to win the trophy, defeating PIA “A” in the final.

A brief summary of the match in question:

Railways 238

PIA “B”  51 and (fo) 119.

As mentioned above, Nawaz Sharif  scored a duck. He was the No 2 batsman, and did not bowl or take a catch.

His team-mates included two international players in Arif Butt and Mohammed Nazir who each played in a few Tests. The latter took 11 wickets in the match.

The PIA team did not have any international players. There was a Saeed Ahmed who batted at No 11, though he is not the one you are thinking of.

NS also appears in one “miscellaneous” one-day match which does not have List A status. This match was played between Lahore Gymkhana and England at Bagh-e-Jinnah, Lahore on 7 Oct 1987, as one of the warm-up matches for the Reliance World Cup.

This stadium was earlier known as Lawrence Gardens and had hosted a few Tests in 1955-59.

http://cricketarchive.com/Archive/Scorecards/201/201432.html

In this match England won by 129 runs, with NS batting at No 2 and bowled by DeFreitas for 1.

(Thanks to Pradeep Ramarathman for remembering the second match).

He also participated in non-serious matches later on, such as one in a meeting of Commonwealth leaders in the early 90s. In one of these matches he hit a few sixes.

Perhaps the high point of his cricket career occurred when he was PM, when Pakistan’s team captained by Imran Khan won the World Cup in 1992:

Nawaz Sharif and Pakistan cricket team

 

Bangladesh cricket hits a new low

Only a few days ago we noticed that Bangladesh had finally got a Test ranking (8th) higher than that of the West Indies (9th). It was therefore hoped that Bangladesh would be competitive in the 2-Test series in the West Indies starting on July 4.

That did not happen, as Bangladesh was dismissed for 43 before lunch on the first day of the series at North Point. The main wrecker was Kemar Roach (5-1-8-5 with an injured knee).

In the following tables I have considered 9 or 10 wickets down, to cover cases where teams batted one man short.

This is the lowest score by Bangladesh in all Tests:

Bangladesh lowest scores

It also has the lowest number of balls in any Test innings by Bangladesh (112), the next lowest being 152 for their 62-run effort in 2007.

It is also the lowest Test score by any side since 2000 ( the list shows scores below 75)

Low Test scores since 2000

However, they lasted for 112 balls which is higher than that for Australia (108 balls for 47 in 2011) and 111 balls for 60 in 2015).

And you can see that 43 all out is fairly low down in the all-time Test lows (below 50). India was dismissed for 42 (one man absent) in 1974.

All-time low Test scores

We also look at the all-time Test lows by balls faced (less than 120 balls):

Low scores-less than 120 balls

The all-time low is 75 balls by SA for 30 all out in 1924. The NZ team which made 26 all out did survive for 162 balls and thus does not appear here. India’s record low of 102 balls for 42 can be seen here.

The Bangladesh team’s 112 balls is one more than Australia’s 111 balls for 60 in 2015 and 108 balls in 2011, which are the lowest in recent years.

Finally we look at the lowest scores in the first innings of the match (below 60);

Lowest 1st innings scores

Bangladesh’s 43 today is the 3rd lowest here, and the lowest since 1946.

Also note that England won after being dismissed for 45 in 1887.

And the lowest number of balls faced in the first innings of the match (below 120):

Lowest balls in first innings

Here Bangladesh has survived for one ball more than Australia’s famous 60 in 2015, which is the record.

And the 43 is the lowest Test score in the West Indies:

Lowest Test score in WI

The ultimate multilingual signs in India

There are at least two station signs in India which have signs in 5 languages. They are not far apart, but in different states:

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERARaichur station-5 languages

The upper one is in Telangana, and the lower one is in Karnataka. While traveling from Mumbai to Chennai you will pass both. Raichur is about 26 km to the south of Krishna. Many express trains stop at both, taking about 40 minutes between them.

However, there is this one from the 1940s:

Vizianagaram ( very old)

This is in the north-eastern part of Andhra Pradesh, not far from Odisha. In the 1940s it was part of the Madras Presidency which stretched all the way to Odisha (including Chatrapur where it is said that Alan Turing was conceived.)^

So you see Telugu, Odiya, Hindi, English and Urdu.

Some years later we see:

Vizianagaram (old)

Still 4 languages, with Urdu gone. The English spelling has changed slightly. This would be some time after 1966. But it was never on the South Central Railway.

Today it looks like this:

Vizianagaram

 

This follows the usual three-language formula. Odiya has also departed.

Those familiar with Indian cricket would have heard of this place because of this person:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maharajkumar_of_Vizianagram

As he was the second son of the ruler, his official title was Maharajkumar and not Maharaja. He is generally known for being an incompetent cricketer and commentator, though he did play some useful role in administration.

^ Alan Turing’s father was in the Madras Presidency cadre of the ICS, and was posted in places which are now in Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh and Odisha. He was posted in Chatrapur at the time Alan was conceived. His mother then went to England where he was born in 1912, and he never visited India.