India Nation of Fixers, Azhar 4th Century Terminated – Exclusive
Can you believe this – what we see on channels and what is revealed by score card have no match? For example on a spinning track India had Kumble as regular spinner but who was engaged as opening bowler. Tendulkar bowled full quota of ten overs. Indian spinners picked up 3 wickets for 156 runs in 35 overs – Tendulkar claimed two but Sri Lana with better balanced team picked up 6 wickets for 68 runs in 23.1 overs. Out of 84.1 overs, 58.1 were bowled by Spin Bowlers.
Even more interesting in the same World Cup India had lost to Sri Lana by Six Wickets 11 days earlier – Navjot Sidhu was not playing in that match. Manoj Prabhakar who opened scored just 7 runs from 36 balls on batting wicket.
Something TV channels have not covered is that India is a nation of fixers, banias and traders – from vegetables to politics to sports teams to even matches and even jobs of judges are fixed. Even Contracts & Licenses to Ambanis are Fixed as an example.
Teams in India were / are fixed on the basis of regional quotas – players are more loyal to their boards than team captains in most cases. Even Manjrekar one down batsman in 1996 World Cup Match was not considered ODI player.
Team selection of 1996 World Cup match was fixed – otherwise how do you explain Srinath batting after fall of 4th wicket of Manjrekar? And thereafter Jadeja, Mongia, Kapoor, Kumble and Prasad were in line.
As India went in to Semi Final on a spinning track India didn't have Regular Turning Spinners to take advantage of the situation. Except four New Ball wickets, three to Srinath and one two Vaas, the game was dominated by Spinners – even Jayasurya and DeSilva were unplayable picked up 4 wickets conceding 15 runs.
Chasing a target of 251 runs Tendulkar and Manjrekar had consumed 150 balls when they were out at 98 and 101.
Kambli who arrived at the fall of Azhar when score was 99 scored added just 10 runs from 29 balls and didn't hit a boundary and 21 runs were scored of 55 balls.
No one call it fixing when Gavaskar declared when Azhar was just 46 runs short of World Record 4th Century in successive tests on debut.
But we are Dieing for 100th Century from another player for most part of this years.
Azhar hits back at Kambli for insinuation
ADAY after former India Test batsman Vinod Kambli raised doubts on his then captain Mohammed Azharuddin's decision to field first against Sri Lanka in the 1996 World Cup semi- final, he was at the receiving end of a sharp reaction from the skipper as well as former players.
While Azharuddin felt that there was "something wrong" with Kambli's brain, Ajit Wadekar, who was coach of the team, said that it was decided a day before the semi- final that on winning the toss the team would field first as they were good chasers.
But Azhar, now a member of Parliament, was more stinging in his reaction, saying "there is something wrong with Mr Kambli's brain". "To talk like that is something disrespectful to the entire team... I don't know how Kambli came to know that we were going to bat first," Azhar told Headlines Today. "No opening batsman had padded up."
Kambli made the sensational statement during a television show. "I will never forget the 1996 match because my career ended after that and I was dropped from the team. I was stunned by India's decision to field," Kambli had said.
"Absolutely rubbish, whatever he is talking. He doesn't know what he is talking, when you have people who have no character and no background come on TV and talk absolute rubbish in front of the nation and demeaning all the players who played in the team. It is totally disrespectful and it's very sad," Azhar told reporters here.
Azhar also stressed that the decision to field first was a collective team decision. "It was a team decision which was taken by all the team members that when we win the toss we will field. Whatever he is talking is absolutely rubbish and nonsense," he said.
"Maybe, when he was sitting in the meeting, he must have been sleeping." Wadekar agreed with Azhar. "I did not even think there was anything suspicious in that loss. It was purely because we misread the wicket and were slightly overconfident after beating Pakistan in the quarter- final," he said. "Why did he wake up suddenly after 15 years? During my four- and- half year stint (with the national team), I used to frequently have dinner with Vinod. Had he told me about his suspicions then, I'd have requested the Board to probe the matter." The semi- final, played at the Eden Gardens in Kolkata, was abandoned after spectators started throwing objects on the field and a riot broke in the stands. International Cricket Council match referee Clive Lloyd awarded the match to Sri Lanka when the police failed to control the crowd.
CHASING eventual champions Sri Lanka's 251 for eight in 50 overs, India were 120 for eight in 34.1 overs when Lloyd awarded the match to Arjuna Ranatunga's team. Kambli was the last recognised batsman still batting on 10 and Anil Kumble was yet to open his account.
Four years later, when the Delhi Police unearthed the Hansie Cronje match- fixing scandal, and following a report by the Central Bureau of Investigation, Azharuddin and Ajay Sharma was banned for life while Manoj Prabhakar, Ajay Jadeja and physio Ali Irani were banned for five years. They all were banned following a contentious enquiry by the Board of Control for Cricket in India.
Sanjay Manjrekar, who was part of that team, joined others in rubbishing the claims. "1996 World Cup semi final; the decision to field first may have turned out to be a wrong decision but it was an honest cricketing decision," he tweeted.
Sourav Ganguly, who made his Test debut after the World Cup, asked Kambli to provide proof of what he is claiming. "This is a big allegation. He should come out with a proof. I want to know why he took 15 years to talk about it. If he has proof, let him come out with it. Just because India batted second in the semi- final and lost the match, it doesn't mean that it was fixed," Ganguly told Headlines Today. Interestingly, Ganguly as India captain also took the decision to field first in the 2003 World Cup final against Australia when everyone was expecting India to bat in Johannesburg. India lost the match by a huge margin.
Venkatapathy Raju, a member of the 1996 squad, said that Kambli was stirring up an unnecessary controversy. "I don't think the match was fixed. The claims made by Kambli are false. The decision to bowl was a collective decision," he said.
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