Monday, March 13, 2006

Kapil lights up Mohali

Kapil Dev, India's greatest all-rounder, is back in his home town over the weekend, although indications suggest he is not here just to catch the last three days play of the Test match.

The 'Haryana Hurricane' was caught up in a scandal five years ago, when the former Indian bowler Manoj Prabhakar accused Kapil of offering him money to under-perform during the 1994 tour to Sri Lanka. The alleged incident came to light when former BCCI president and current PCA chairman Inderjit Bindra gave an interview to CNN.

Kapil's company, Dev Musco Lighting, was also responsible for the array of floodlights at the stadium in Mohali and it is rumoured that Kapil, now a successful businessman, is here to make up with Bindra during the next two days.


At least Kapil will be able to sleep in comfort - he is staying at his hotel 'The Kaptain's Retreat' which also features a restaurant called 'Elevens'.

Kapil opened the hotel after India heroically won the 1983 World Cup Final at Lord's and it now houses most of the memorabilia he amassed during an established career. The boutique hotel also has 10 rooms which are all named after his individual achievements like 'Tied Test' (India v Australia, 1986), '432' (World record Test wickets) and 'Four Sixes' (ask Eddie Hemmings).

A quick survey around the Nobok Legends out here in India tells us that offers haven't been thick or fast for a Gower Wine Bar or a Beefy Basement Pub over the years. However, Mike Gatting's brother-in-law briefly set up a Gatt's Bar in Southern Spain, while Athers says, if anything, a fish and chip shop named after him in the North would do just fine. Watch out for a Kapil Dev video feature between Tests next week.

Rod Gilmour in Chandigarh