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Mohali waits to ‘frame’ the hero

Once the second Test gets over, people concerned might get the opportunity to frame a special occasion and give it as big a display, reports Atreyo Mukhopadhyay.

cricket Updated: Oct 17, 2008 00:16 IST
Atreyo Mukhopadhyay

The PCA Stadium is one of the few in the country that welcomes visitors with an array of photographs. A walk around the reception area or the staircase inside reveals that authorities here have this noble habit of decorating walls with pictures of memorable moments and cricketers.

Once the second Test gets over, people concerned might get the opportunity to frame a special occasion and give it as big a display as they have to the huge print of a shot of MS Dhoni's T20 champions being paraded through the streets of Mumbai on a roofless double-decker.

Sachin Tendulkar needs 15 runs more to break Brian Lara's record and become the batsman with most Test runs. The countdown had started in July when India went to Sri Lanka with the little legend needing 172 to add to his world-record list of Test centuries, ODI centuries and ODI runs.

As it so happened, Tendulkar came back with 95 runs from six innings. After tallying 62 in the two innings in Bangalore in the first Test, he has set pulses racing and people are expecting him to cross the milestone here. The PCA, however, is showing no signs of getting impatient.

"We would be delighted if he does it here and wish him all the best, but let him do it first," said a senior official of the association on Thursday. "It's not that thoughts of making the moment special have not crossed our minds, but we will talk about it only after he breaks the world record."

Not many venues in India have witnessed a milestone of such magnitude and the Sardar Patel Gujarat Stadium in Ahmedabad is a rare place that saw two landmarks – Kapil Dev breaking Richard Hadlee's record of maximum Test wickets in 1994 and Sunil Gavaskar becoming the first batsman to aggregate 10,000 Test runs in 1987.

Strange things happen like Don Bradman's dismissal for zero in his last Test innings when he needed a mere four to achieve a career average of 100. The Punjab Cricket Association can't be blamed for hoping that nothing like that happens here over the next five days. The officials might just have to look for a place to fix another photograph of the man whose giant image adorns the stadium's wall with Gavaskar and Kapil.