Durban: It?s all too familiar
Durban is the last new place on our itinerary and it is about as close to home as you can get. In terms of the weather, it reminds you of Mumbai while the traffic congestion could be just about anywhere.india Updated: Mar 16, 2003 02:58 IST
Durban is the last new place on our itinerary and it is about as close to home as you can get. In terms of the weather, it reminds you of Mumbai while the traffic congestion could be just about anywhere.
Outside the airport, you immediately realise the Indian-ness of the place. 'Prem's Bus and Truck Service' is the first banner to be seen and most of the locals look much like you. It is easy to blend in, until you speak of course, as the sing-song lilt of the Indians here is distinctive.
That apart, there is little different. A drive from our residence here, the 1906 Guest House (so named as it was built in that year), takes you across a bus terminus, pretty similar to anything you'll see in Haridwar, Kanpur or Howrah. There are people all around, crossing through the traffic, stationary or not, and minibus conductors scream out routes and cajole passengers to choose their rickety van over the others.
The roads aren't much different either, and neither is the driving. Traffic rules, followed stringently in cities like Cape Town and Johannesburg, are pretty marginalised here, with lane jumping and swerving through vehicles not bringing any loud protests.
But this place too has its attractions. Royal Delhi restaurant at the Riverside location has a great view of the city and the seafront is a popular tourist spot. As long as you keep your wallets and, as some colleagues found out, cellphones, hidden away discreetly.
Left is right this time
There is a very interesting little e-mail message making its rounds here. It may challenge your logic and mathematics, but makes for some very interesting reading.
It goes like this:
Who were the winners of the all the previous World Cups? In 1979, it was Clive Lloyd of the West Indies, followed by Kapil Dev in 1983. The 1987 honours went to Allan Border, and Imran Khan won the distinction in 1992. Four years later, Arjuna Ranatunga baffled the world of cricket, and then Steve Waugh won from nowhere in 1999.
So what's the interesting point? Well, left and right-handed captains have won the World Cup alternately.
So, in 2003, is he going to be a left-hander again?
The choice is from three --- Sanath Jayasuriya, Stephen Fleming or Sourav Ganguly -- and no prizes for guessing whom we back.
Now, another little piece of arithmetic. After the first round, Australia had won 12 consecutive matches. If they win all the Super Six games, the total, comes to 15. Add the semi-final, and it will be 16 games since Australia lost. Does that figure, 16, strike a bell? That was the number of consecutive Tests won by Australia till the sequence was broken in Kolkata by…. India!
More on numbers
Need more? The West Indies were champions in 1975 and 1979, four years apart. Australia won in 1987 and 1999, a difference of 12 years. By Arithmetic Progression (in simple terms, the difference between the two figures) the next number is 20.
And guess who won the World Cup 20 years ago!
While all your logic and calculations will be challenged by these little figures, no denying the sequence. While we agree it'll take more than just this to win the World Cup again, no harm in hoping, is there?