Happy New Year in many languages

Let us see if Google Translate has improved in handling Indian languages.

“We wish you a happy new year” is translated  below, first in some other languages:

 

Arabic:    نتمنى لكم سنة جديدة سعيدة

French:    nous vous souhaitons une bonne année

German:   Wir wünschen Ihnen ein frohes neues Jahr

Latin:   Nos volo vobis New Anno beatus

Russian:   Желаем вам счастливого нового года

Spanish:   Te deseamos un feliz año nuevo

 

Coming home:

Bengali:   আমরা আপনাকে একটি নতুন বছরের শুভ কামনা করি

Gujarati:   અમે તમને નવા વર્ષની શુભેચ્છા પાઠવું છું

Hindi:   हम आपको नए साल की शुभकामनाएं देते हैं

Kannada:   ನಾವು ನಿಮಗೆ ಹೊಸ ವರ್ಷದ ಶುಭಾಶಯಗಳನ್ನು ಕೋರುತ್ತೇವೆ

Malayalam:  നിങ്ങൾക്ക് പുതുവത്സരാശംസകൾ നേരുന്നു

Marathi:   आम्ही तुम्हाला नवीन वर्षाच्या शुभेच्छा देतो

Nepali:   हामी तपाईलाई नयाँ सालको शुभकामना दिन्छौं

Punjabi:   ਅਸੀਂ ਤੁਹਾਨੂੰ ਨਵੇਂ ਸਾਲ ਦੀ ਖੁਸ਼ੀ ਚਾਹੁੰਦੇ ਹਾਂ

Tamil:   உங்களுக்கு புத்தாண்டு வாழ்த்துக்கள்

Telugu:   మీకు నూతన సంవత్సర శుభాకాంక్షలు

Urdu:  ہم آپ کو نیا سال مبارک ہو

A cursory glance gives the impression that the translation into Indian languages is somewhat better than it was a few years ago.

Note: Among the widely spoken languages, Assamese, Kashmiri and Konkani are yet to appear. Sindhi is written in a script different from that used in India.

Most languages now have the translation in Roman script as well as voice, which makes Google Translate somewhat more useful in practical situations.

 

T20Is of 2019-2

When we look at individual performances, most of the top scorers and wicket-takers are from the second-rung teams such as Afghanistan, Ireland and Netherlands who have played relatively more matches than the major teams.

Batting:

Most runs (500 or more):

Most runs-500

The two top-scorers are from Ireland and the next two from the Netherlands. KJ O’Brien has made a Test century. But no one here is from the major teams.

Highest innings (100 or more):

Highest innings

Again, the top 3 are not from the major teams. H Zazai’s 162* is the highest T20I score for Afghanistan (and the second in all T20Is after AJ Finch’s 172 in 2018).

There are some players from the major teams such as GJ Maxwell, DJ Malan and DA Warner plus a sprinkling from lesser-ranked teams such as Austria, Romania and the Czech Republic among others.

Bowling:

Most wickets (20 or more):

Most wkts-20

The first few are from the Netherlands, Nepal and Ireland. The better-known players such as Rashid Khan and MJ Santner just make the cut.

Best innings bowling (including all instances of 5+ wickets):

Bowling-best analysis

Here we have the best performance by DL Chahar from India – but the next two are from Argentina and Luxembourg. The veteran Malinga, Rashid Khan and a couple  from England are the other known players here.

Fielding:

Most dismissals (12 and above):

Dismissals

Apart from KJ O’Brien and DA Miller, there are no familiar names. The most dismissals by a keeper are 26 by SA Edwards of the Netherlands, and by a non-keeper 17 by BDH Stevens of Jersey.

Most dismissals in an innings (4 or more):

Innings fielding

DA Miller of SA is in 3rd place with 4 catches as a non-keeper. Also by de Grandhomme and Ramdin, while the best performance is by players from Kenya and PNG.

All-round match performances (30 runs and 3 wickets):

AR-overall

Familiar names here are SC Williams (Zim), Rohan Mustafa (UAE) and CJ Jordan (Eng). The best performance would be by S Davizi of the Czech Republic and SC Williams.

To sum up, the increased “democratization” of T20I cricket will mean more opportunities for teams beyond the to 10 or 12 and a hope that one day they will be able to compete with them. Players with South Asian names can be found all over, especially in the European teams.

 

Centurion Test-some obscure facts

JM Anderson took Elgar’s wicket with the 1st ball of a Test (and the series).

Taking a wicket with the first ball of  a match is rare enough to merit a separate list:

http://stats.espncricinfo.com/ci/content/records/283164.html

Anderson is playing in his 150th Test. This by itself is no big deal. But he extends his record of the most Tests without ever captaining his side. Next in line is Warne (144) and Broad (playing his 135th Test) and VVS Laxman (134).

AK Markram is playing his 20th Test. His previous 19 Tests included 11 wins and 8 losses and no draw. He holds the record of the most Tests played without a draw. Next is old-timer GA Lohmann (18 Tests, 15 wins, 3 losses) followed by current player KK Jennings (17/12/5) and Alok Kapali (17/0/17). Jennings may play in the future.

Update: Markram played in his 20th Test at Centurion which SA won. So he extended his record to 20 Tests without a draw (12 wins and 8 losses).

ALSO-6 of the playing 11 for England have a given name starting with J: Anderson, Archer, Root, Denly, Buttler and Bairstow. Would this domination by one letter be a record? Maybe there have been Pakistani teams with more players with names starting with M?

Another oddity: South Africa now have two different Test players named D Pretorius. The earlier Dewald P played 4 Tests in 2002-2003 as a pace bowler:

http://www.espncricinfo.com/southafrica/content/player/46784.html

Today Dwaine Pretorius, a pace bowling all-rounder, made his debut:

http://www.espncricinfo.com/southafrica/content/player/327830.html

T20Is of 2019-1

The year of the “big bang” when many new teams were admitted to “official” T20Is. A quick look at the results:

Teams ranked by W/L ratio:

T20Is 2019 WL

A total of 71 teams played at least one T20I this year.

You will agree that the above table doesn’t mean much. Australia (OK), Argentina and Belize !? are the top teams, are they? And is Jersey as good as India?

Let us look at the ICC rankings, which are supposed to be more refined:

ICC rankings T20I end 2019

There are 86 teams covered in these rankings. The last 7 have zero points:

T20Is 2019 bottom teams

One might argue that Gibraltar and China are the worst teams as they have played the most matches for zero points.

Anyway, back to the top. The T20I World Championship will be held in Australia in late 2020:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2020_ICC_Men%27s_T20_World_Cup

The 16 teams participating are the top 19 in the ICC ranking table MINUS Zimbabwe, Nepal and UAE.

Next we look at individual performances in T20Is.

Summing up of results of captaincies

For Tests up to 04 Dec 2019:

WINNING ALL THEIR TESTS:

A Bacher (4)

Lord Hawke (4)

LOSING ALL THEIR TESTS:

Khaled Mashud (12)

Khaled Mahmud (9)

DRAWING ALL THEIR TESTS:

K Srikkanth (4)

Majid Khan (3)

Saeed Ahmed (3)

NEVER WINNING A TEST:

Mohammad Ashraful (13)

IT Botham (12)

Khaled Mashud (12)

NEVER LOSING A TEST:

WW Armstrong (10)

DB Close (7)

FG Mann (7)

NEVER DRAWING A TEST:

Waqar Younis (17)

Shakib Al Hasan (14)

Rail quiz: New and old names of stations

Tirupadiripuliyur

This time you have to mention the old name of the station. The changes would have taken place between the 1940s and 2010s. In a few cases there are multiple changes of name, but give at least one of the old names.

1) Achalpur

2) Adarsh Nagar Delhi

3) Bangarapet

4) Bharuch

5) Bidhan Nagar Road

6) Chhapra

7) Chittaranjan

8) Dhone

9) Kahalgaon

10) Kollam

11) Manthralayam Road

12) Miyagam Karjan

13) Nagaon

14) Nagapattinam

15) Palakkad Jn

16) Palakkad Town

17) Palampur (Himachal)

18) Parangipettai

19) Ranapratap Nagar

20) Sewagram

20) Shivaji Bridge

21) Siwan

22) Tiruppadirippuliyur

23) Tirunelveli Jn

24) Varanasi Jn

25) Vijayapura

Answers below. The best efforts were by Sagar Tipnis and Ganesh Iyer.

Quiz-New and old station names

 

 

 

RIP Basil Butcher: an odd episode

This year has seen the passing of two of the prominent batsmen of the dominant West Indies teams of the 1960s, first Seymour Nurse on May 6 and now Basil Butcher on December 16. A look back on his career:

http://www.espncricinfo.com/westindies/content/player/51239.html

He made an immediate impact on his debut series which was against India in 1958-59, scoring 486 runs at an average of almost 70. His more famous innings included 133 at Lord’s in 1963 which probably saved WI from defeat, and 209* at Nottingham in 1966 which was also crucial.

But it is somewhat odd bowling career that we turn to. He was an occasional leg-spinner who was only rarely called upon to bowl. He had bowled 5 overs for 0-17 in his debut series. The next time he bowled in a Test was at Port of Spain in 1967-68, where he took 5-34 as the 6th bowler to be tried in that innings. He started with dismissing the top scorer Cowdrey and took the last 5 wickets, reducing England from 376/5 to 404.

The first 3 Tests had been drawn. The WI captain Gary Sobers was keen to break the stalemate, and he thought he had found his secret weapon. Declaring in the 3rd innings can sometimes lead to an unwanted result, as he would have known:

Winning against declaration

Anyway, he declared at the low score of 92/2 and hoped that the bowlers including Butcher would dismiss England for less than 215.

Boycott (80*) and Cowdrey (71) had other ideas. Butcher ended with 0-17, and England took an 1-0 lead in the series. They just managed to avoid defeat in the 5th Test, and thus won the series. Sobers was widely blamed for gifting the Test away:

https://www.espncricinfo.com/series/17297/scorecard/63017/west-indies-vs-england-4th-test-england-tour-of-west-indies-1967-68

And these were the only wickets Butcher took in his Test career. He is one of the few who took a fiver and no other wickets in his career:

Basil Butcher bowling

 

The NWR and partition

This includes part of a book which was not published. It may be of interest to some who are interested in the NWR at the time of Partition and later.

It should be noted that (essentially) the present Delhi, Ambala and Firozpur divisions fell in India and the rest of the NWR fell in Pakistan.

This is the official map from the “History of Railways” in 1937.

NWR in 1937 001

I don’t think there was any significant change from this point to 1947, apart from realignment which shifted the junction point at Ruk to nearby Habib Kot.

Apart from this, part of the metre gauge Jodhpur Railway (one time Jodhpur State Railway) beyond Munabao to Hyderabad (Sind) fell in Pakistan.

A similar official map from 1937:

Jodhpur Railway 1937 001

The line from Mirpur Khas to Nawabshah via Khadro was completed later (in 1939).

Note the “frontier” stations at Phulad, Chilo, Sujangarh and Kuchaman Road.

Raniwara and Phalodi were terminuses then.

Initially the NWR name continued to be used in Pakistan until 1961 when it became PWR and later PR. The metre gauge lines of the ex JoR were included in the NWR.

In India, the ex-NWR portions initially were a separate system called the East Punjab Railway, which soon became part of the Northern Railway. The EPR had joined the old EIR at Saharanpur and Ghaziabad.

However, the Saharanpur-Shahdara NG line was part of neither but continued to be owned by Martin & Co (later Martin Burn) until it closed in 1970.

The remaining part of the Jodhpur State Railway in India soon became the Jodhpur division of NR, and still later in the new NWR (HQ Jaipur) which has no connection whatsoever with the old NWR.

(Partition in the East was also quite complicated, so we leave that for another day).

Here is the extract of the unpublished book by Ken Staynor who is no more:

Breakup of the North Western Railway and the Anglo-Indian community

Aiden Markram is back (Updated to Jan 15, 2022)

Refresh your memory here:

http://www.espncricinfo.com/southafrica/content/player/600498.html

As readers of this column know, Aiden Markram has the longest palindromic name among international cricketers, with the competition coming from Rangy Nanan and Arun Lal (besides Talat Ali and Naman Ojha).

https://abn397.wordpress.com/2017/09/30/palindromic-names-for-cricketers/

Apart from that, he had a good run at the start, with 97 on debut and centuries in his second and third Tests. (It helps if you are playing at home in South Africa against Bangladesh for two Tests followed by Zimbabwe).

Anyway, he was a sort of lucky charm for South Africa as they won in each of his first 5 Tests. India broke this spell when they won the 3rd Test of the 2017-18 series.

He had a bad tour of India in 2019, making a second-ball pair (or silver pair) in the second Test before being dropped for the third.

Anyway he holds another peculiar record in all Tests. He has played the most Tests (29) without ever seeing a draw, up to Jan 15, 2022. 18 of these matches were won by South Africa and 11 were lost.

The record was earlier held by England’s George Lohmann (18 Tests) of long ago, who saw 15 wins and 3 losses. Next is a recent player KK Jennings (Eng) with 17 (12 wins and 5 losses). Alok Kapali (BD) shares this tally of 17 (0 wins and 17 losses). Once Markram encounters a drawn Test, the record goes back to Lohmann.

I wonder if anyone has told Markram of this record. At least it sounds more impressive than being the 21st batsman to make a silver pair.

Quiz on old station names in India-1

Here we have a list of names of railway stations which were being used in timetables between the 1930s and 1970s.

Do you know the current names?

1. Begamabad

2.  Cambay

3.  Cannanore

4.  Chakki Bank

5.  Chicacole Road

6.  Chutiapara

7.  Contai Road

8.  Daman Road

9.  Ellis Bridge

10. Ellora Road

11. French Rocks

12. Futwah

13 Goya Gate

14 Hyderabad (MG)

15 Kankanadi

16 Kirkee

17 Kothapetta

18 Manipur Road

19 Margao

20 Mhow

The best effort is by Bharat Prashar, 18/20.

Answers are given below:

Old and new names-1

Chutiapara was associated with the Chutia tribe of Assam.

Ellis Bridge is a locality in Ahmedabad near the British-era bridge of that name. There is still a Vidhan Sabha constituency of that name.

Potul is between Manmad and Aurangabad.

Kothapetta became Sirpur Kagaznagar when a paper factory came up there. The station to the south was Sirpur which became Sirpur Town.

Manipur Road was listed as Dimapur Manipur Road in the 1960s before it became Dimapur.

 

Test captaincy updates-1

It is easy enough to get updated tables like this:

(All these tables are updated to May 15, 2021):

Most Tests (120 and above)

Current players with the most Tests are Anderson (160) and Broad (146).

Another table which is easy to create:

Most Tests as Captain (40 and above):

Kohli is the only current player here. He has captained in 60 Tests and has equalled Dhoni (60). He overtook Ganguly (49), Gavaskar and Azharuddin (47) not long ago. Root is on 50.

But this one needs a little more work with Excel:

Most Tests NOT as Captain (90 and above):

Tendulkar and Kallis lead. The most by current players are 161 by Anderson and 146 by his team-mate Broad.

Now what about those who played the most Tests without ever captaining their sides (90 and above)?

Led by Anderson and Broad, who recently surpassed the long-standing record of Warne.

VVS Laxman (134) has the highest for India which will probably stand for a long time..

Other current players are Ishant Sharma (101) and NM Lyon (100).

Finally, those who played all their Tests as captains (all cases):

Most of them are from the olden days, except LK Germon (12). Perhaps there was an acute shortage of captaincy talent in New Zealand in the mid-90s. And there is Porterfield who captained Ireland in the only 3 Tests which they have played.

Note the 5 at the bottom who played only one Test, in which they were captain.

There are a fair number of the glorious amateurs and their counterparts like Vizianagaram.

Why Ecuador?

Swami Nithyananda seems to have captured the imagination of a section of the population, who are anxious to migrate to the Nation of Kailasa:

https://newstodaynet.com/index.php/2019/12/10/12-lakh-applied-for-kailasa-citizenship-nithyananda/

But where is it? The above report (as well as the official website)  https://kailaasa.org/

do not make it clear. Some newspaper reports say that he made his way to Ecuador via Nepal, and that he purchased an island from that country. Some news websites with muddled geography stated that this island was near Trinidad & Tobago, which is a few thousand km away from Ecuador.

But why Ecuador, anyway? In recent years it had hosted the fugitive Julian Assange at its embassy in London until they got tired of him. To refresh your memory see https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Julian_Assange  and the climax at https://www.bbc.com/news/world-latin-america-47907600

However, Ecuador is supposed to have a long association with people who have a problem with India. This goes back to the Khalistan movement. From the Wikipedia article on the Khalistan movement, we see:

“Embassies in Britain and other European countries were opened by Chohan. It is reported that with the assistance of a wealthy Californian supporter, a peach magnate, he opened an Ecuadorian bank account to support his operation.”

Some years later, a Sikh writer tried to find out what the Khalistan supporters had achieved in Ecuador. His report:

https://www.sikhglobalvillage.com/stories_sikhecuador1.htm

So there is some history of the Ecuadorean government getting involved with dubious activities connected with India.

Meanwhile, humorists on Facebook and elsewhere have to generate material about the Swami and his country. It is known that Ecuador has an island province including the Galapagos islands and its famed flora and fauna, including this fellow:

Galapagos tortoise 2

One could imagine him being cuddled by the Swami.