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Mumbai diary: Sunday Shorts

The city — sliced, diced and served with a dash of sauce

So, you have a body builder in you?
It was hustle the muscle at the Press Club in Mumbai recently, where the Indian Body Builders’ Federation (IBBF) held a press conference to announce that they would host the World Body Building Championship in Mumbai (Goregaon) from December 7 to 9, this year.


Let it rrrrrip: Indian body builders with Pradeep Madhok and IBBF chief (centre in white shirt). Pic/Sameer Markande

Strapping body builders filled up the small press conference hall and mingled with officials. One of those officials was Pradeep Madhok, president IBBF. When asked approximately how many body builders were there globally, Madhok looked quizzical. Then, he surprised many by saying, “It is important to define body builder.

If you are a person who works out regularly, lifts weights and sculpts your body, at some level you have joined our ranks already; you are a body builder. You can get a good body by working out and concentrating on protein, chapattis, with green veggies and a soya bean vegetable.” So, do you have a body builder in you?

Mean streets
Stray dogs have a way with your affection. All it takes is letting your guard down. Don’t be too defensive. They are not there to bite you. They get their grub from the streets, not from our body. Their behaviour is a lot like human. If they went to school, they too would have been fascinated by the way fountain pen nibs sucked in ink.

A stray dog walks on the middle of the road along the white stripe because he just doesn’t care who is on that bike approaching him
A stray dog walks on the middle of the road along the white stripe because he just doesn’t care who is on that bike approaching him

They are of the curious kind. The kind we are supposed to be but aren’t. Being outdoor almost their entire life, they can’t have it any other way. Survival instincts are built under the sky, not a roof. Little surprise why they are so wayward most of the time. 

What can excite or dull them is never known. Almost to the point you wonder whether they are living it up in the city — unlike you. And they are growing like never before. Their numbers aren’t declining. Mumbai has seen a steady rise and so has her sister satellite city. “What sterilisation?” seems to be
the question.

Matters of selection
In many ways, the great game of cricket can be as grey as a cloudy day, especially when it comes to matters of selection.

Kiran Powar
Kiran Powar

Don’t we keep hearing stories of sinister inclusions and omissions? Hear another: Former India under-19 captain Kiran Powar, who also represented Mumbai in the Ranji Trophy, tells Sunday Shorts that he recently turned away from an outstation coaching stint because he was tired of being pressured to include an under-19 player who did not merit a place in the limited overs team. That this player was related to an influential figure is another matter.

Kiran (36), the elder brother of erstwhile India off-spinner Ramesh, tendered his resignation and returned to the city to focus on his business. 

Who’s right, who’s wrong, we are in no position to declare but it is good to hear about someone standing up to what he believes is wrong in a society full of fence sitters. Doubtless, Indian sport needs more Kiran Powars.

We shudder to think about the number of coaches being pressurised all over India to promote players because of their family connections. Cricket sure needs policing and the media cannot be expected to do it all the time. Are there any tough guys among the several cricket czars running cricket who are willing to get their hands dirty to clean up this dirty business?

They must be seen because if deserving players are deprived of opportunities, it is India’s loss as well. God help our cricket.

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