Sports Confidential: From taking it off to coveting it

From taking it off to coveting it

Sourav Ganguly may have taken his shirt off at cricket's most hallowed piece of real estate in the Lord's balcony, but he also owns a collection of them. Once he came to know about Sunil Gavaskar's impending Argentina visit during the Mumbai Test, he promptly requested for an Argentina jersey with Diego Maradona's name and No. 10 printed on it.

Maradona has always been Ganguly's favourite footballer. Gavaskar too wanted to meet the soccer great, but by the time he reached Buenos Aires, Maradona had left for Dubai. So the two legends couldn't meet but Gavaskar bought a shirt for Ganguly of the same design that Maradona wore during the 1986 World Cup. Ganguly added it to his collection during the Kolkata Test.

Manoj Prabhakar may have been sacked by the DDCA as the chief coach but the players still can't get enough of him, apparently. Players frequently call out for 'Manoj' during their time under the winter sun. But it turns out the 'Manoj' in question is not the former coach, but the sunscreen he helped introduce to the team. The sunscreen is one of the products from Prabhakar's line of cosmetics, but 'Manoj' faces competition from another brand, appropriately named after another fast bowler, 'Zaheer Khan.' May be not so appropriately, after his recent axe from the Indian side.

Out of squad, out of favour?.

Punjab was sitting pretty on top of Group A with 29 points after five matches. But news that Harbhajan Singh was released from the squad that took part in the third Test put the Punjab team management in a quandary ahead of the Mumbai clash. The relatively young Punjab squad had rolled over the opposition without the help of the senior spinner but the return of Harbhajan meant that the winning combination would have to be tampered with. One of the top Punjab Cricket Association officials called Harbhajan and told him that he could rest himself for the match if he so wished. However, Harbhajan declined the offer and is currently playing against Mumbai at the Wankhede Stadium.

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