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.

Test captaincy and non-captaincy records

It is easy enough to get the full figures of Test captains from Statsguru:

Those who captained for 35 or more Tests:

Captains

And it is easy enough to find those who were non-captains in the most Tests:

Those who played 100 or more Tests as non-captains:

Non captains

While Tendulkar, Kallis and Chanderpaul did captain their team in some Tests, there are others (starting with Warne) who never captained at all. We now take a closer look at this category:

Those who played 80 or more Tests without ever captaining their teams:

Zero captains

SK Warne leads here with 144, with JM Anderson and VVS Laxman as runners-up. The highest for other Test teams are:

Sri Lanka-132 (M Muralitharan)

South Africa-101 (M Ntini)

West Indies-98 (CEL Ambrose)

New Zealand-86 (Sir RJ Hadlee)

Pakistan-76 (Mudassar Nazar)

Zimbabwe-67 (GW Flower)

Bangladesh-40 (Javed Omar)

In a few cases (e.g. Warne) they led their country in a few ODIs. Sometimes even that consolation was not there.

At the other end of the spectrum, there are a small number who captained their team in all their Tests. There are various reasons for this-mainly because only amateurs were considered suitable to lead England until Hutton in the 1950s. In the West Indies, the captaincy was restricted to those of European ancestry for the first few decades.

In some cases (notably SA) most players were inexperienced in the early years and there was a rapid turnover of players as well as captains. And there were strange cases like the Maharajdhirajkumar of Vizianagram which Indian cricket fans would know about.

So here is the full list of 24 players who captained their side in all their Tests:

Pure captains

The leader here is the long-forgotten South African Percy Sherwell of the early 20th century:

http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/content/player/47186.html

Interestingly, he was a wicket keeper-one of the few who played more than a handful of Tests as captain until Dhoni came along.

The only¬† instance of “pure captains” in recent years was LK Germon of NZ in the mid-90s. He was also a wicket keeper. http://www.espncricinfo.com/ci/content/player/37101.html

We also see James Lillywhite jnr of England who captained his side in the first 2 Tests ever played and never played another, CA Smith who played one Test but carved out a career in Hollywood and N Betancourt who seems to be here because at that time (in the West Indies) the captain had to be from the territory where the Test was played.

Tail piece: LK Germon does possess an odd record-he has scored the most runs on debut without scoring a fifty:

Germon record

 

 

 

 

 

More stations which have a cricket connection

You may have read this earlier post:

https://abn397.wordpress.com/2016/05/24/stations-which-have-a-cricket-connection/

The Test venues which have stations named after them include Lord’s (no longer in existence) and the Oval:

Oval-tube-station-006

In India we have these small suburban stations at Eden Gardens and Chepauk. Both are relatively new, probably dating from the 1990s:

Note the Hindi spelling for “Cheppakkam”,one of the numerous Hindi signs you will find in Chennai with transliteration from Tamil (e.g. Chennai Kotte, Chennai Kodikarai). In contrast, the English, Bengali and Hindi signs all match at Eden Garden.

You would know of stations named Kohli, Sachin and Amla which have nothing to do with the cricketers concerned. But here are two stations which do refer to the states connected with three princely captains:

Pataudi is a rather small place in Haryana, and the locality around the station is better known as Hailey Mandi.

Vizianagaram is a somewhat larger town and important station in northern Andhra Pradesh, though “Vizzy” remained a prince as he was the second son and did not become the ruler. However, Iftekhar Ali Khan and his son Mansur Ali Khan did hold the title of Nawab of Pataudi.

Women’s cricket gets its due here, although it is doubtful if Mumbai-born Smriti Mandhana has anything to do with this place near Kanpur:

Exif_JPEG_420

 

There are other people with connections to cricket whose names include place names. One was the one-Test player the Yuvraj of Patiala, also known as Yadavindra Singh. Patiala is not one of the larger cities of Punjab but is somehow well known, possibly because of the Patiala Peg* which was said to be devised by one of the rulers. Then there was Raj Singh Dungarpur, who was from the royal family of a small state now in Rajasthan.

Stations which have a cricket connection

There are a number of cricket stadiums which have nearby stations with the same name, ranging from this one in London:

Oval-tube-station-006

A station by the name of Lord’s existed in the past, but the section was closed in 1939. The nearest Tube station is St. John’s Wood. Details here:

http://www.disused-stations.org.uk/l/lords/index.shtml

Elsewhere in England we can see stations for these Test venues:

In India, we have stations for Chepauk and Eden Gardens among others.

Also. if you travel from Mumbai to Surat, you will pass

Atul station

and then

Sachin station

The second one needs no explanation, while the first relates to the lesser-known international players Atul Wassan and Atul Bedade and possibly a few more.

The route north of Nagpur is more promising, as it has

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

 

followed by

Amla station

Note that the name Amla is supposed to be derived from “Ammunition Lands” as it has one the largest ammunition depots in the country.

Although Hashim Amla’s ancestors were from Gujarat this does not appear to be a common surname. Amla does mean a fruit (something like a gooseberry) in several Indian languages.

Also see: https://abn397.wordpress.com/2015/01/23/who-or-what-is-amla/

There are also stations such as Pataudi Road and Vizianagaram which are indeed the places where the concerned player’s families were rulers.

And finally this one in India which reminds one of Sri Lanka:

Attipattu