Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : July 28th 2013 Contents A52
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"Sir Viv Richards once asked me how I
feel when India play the West Indies and I
told him that when that happens I am con-
fused as to who to support because here is
a situation where my brothers are playing
my cousins." The words of revered Indian
cricket commentator Ravi Chaturvedi, as he
expressed his love for the West Indies and
the people of this part of the world.
Chaturvedi recently visited Trinidad for the
fifth time during the Celkon Mobile Cup and
was on hand to see India lift the trophy. He
was in Trinidad doing research on a book that
he is currently putting together.
The man who is a household name in India
gain recognition in his homeland by being the
first man to commentate cricket in Hindi.
According to him: "I wanted to reach all the
rural areas in India. I wanted to young ones
in those area of hear of the game and to follow
India and develop an appetite for the sport of
cricket. You see in the rural areas there is not
much that attracts in terms of entertainment
so when India plays this is a big thing for the
people there and we wanted them to get the
commentary and to follow the team." His
efforts to commentate in Hindi caught on
with everyone and it prompted foreign TV
Channels to start to telecast in Hindu. much
to the delight of those who could not under-
stand the cricket in English.
Prof Chaturdevi is an academician and
obtained his M.Sc. degree in Zoology from
the University of Delhi in 1960, specialising
in Fisheries Biology. Following his research
work in induced breeding of carps and training
fish farmers in Pisci-culture, he was selected
by UPSC but he opted for teaching, where
he left a lasting impression by starting a
unique Zoology Museum in the Golden Jubilee
year of the country s Independence.
Prof Chaturvedi had a passion for cricket
since early in his life and played school, college
and club level with a fair degree of success.
He was amongst the 40 trainees selected to
be coached by India s first cricket captain Col
CK Nayudu in 1955.
In 1961 the Government of India decided
to cover all national and international sports
events in Hindi and Prof. Chaturvedi was the
first person to take up that role of Hindi
cricket commentator. According to Chaturvedi:
"It was a big challenge to arrive at the right
language, terminology and nuances to describe
cricket in Hindi, which was met successfully.
With an experimental beginning in 1962,
Hindi commentary soon gained international
When Doordarshan decided to telecast
cricket in 1972, Chaturvedi services were
required and his expertise was later utilized
by World Tel to cover the 1996 World Cup.
He also had stints with TWI, New Zealand
TV and Caribbean Broadcasting Corporation
It was during his first trip to the Caribbean
that Chaturvedi fell in love with the region as
a whole but T&T in particular. He made a
dear friend in Ramcharitar Rickhi and also he
has passed on, Chaturvedi remains close to
the family and actually stayed at their home
in Arouca during his recent visit.
Chaturvedi said he felt at home when he
visited Trinidad and during his many visits
here he has built many bridges with people
that he cherishes up until today. "I find myself
at home in this country. I have always found
the Caribbean to be a fascinating place and
after following fortunes of the West Indies
cricket team, I fell in love with Caribbean
cricket and the people as a whole."
While speaking to Chaturvedi you are
amazed by the fact that the man calls out the
names of villages as if it is in India. He said:
"I evening many years ago I went down to
McBean Village in Couva and I witnessed a
Hindu wedding. It reminded me so much of
home as the wedding was similar to one that
was held for my elder brother back in India.
"I am so happy to see the people of Trinidad
and Tobago carrying on the culture that was
brought by our forefathers. I am really
impressed with that and I find that the Popele
of the Caribbean are very special in the way
they treat with visitors. I like this region so
much that I have already told my family that
when I am no longer around, they must sprin-
kle my ashes in the Caribbean Sea."
West Indies opening batter
Juliana Nero will lead a 14-
member St Vincent and the
Grenadines team, which includes
one newcomer, in the upcoming
West Indies Women's 50 overs
and T20 cricket tournaments to
be held in Grenada, from August
keeper/batter Edelyn Turtin,
joins a team comprised primarily
of regular names. Melisa Billingy,
an experienced all-rounder,
makes a return after a year's
The full team: Juliana Nero
(Captain), Cordel Jack, Crystal
John, Terisha Lavia, Melisa
Billingy, Edelyn Turtin, Roshelle
John, Myschia George, Sherre
Ann John, Latoya Providence,
Hazel-Ann Foster, Vinisha King,
Stacy-Ann Adams, and Shavorne
Xavian Stephens, Ronelia
Fergus and Sue-Ann Martin have
been named as reserves.
Former Windward Islands
player Kenroy Martin will coach
the team, with Josette
Cambridge as the manager.
Jamaica are the defending
champions for the T20 format.
Nero to lead St Vincent in regional women's tournament
falls in love with Trinidad
Professor Ravi Chaturdevi pioneer Hindi cricket commentator was bestowed the National
Award of Padma Shri by H E President Pratibha Patil at New Delhi in 2011. He is the first
cricket commentator to be honoured with the Padma Shri.
WHAT THE CRICKETERS THINK OF PROF RAVI
"During my days playing and managing in India,
I have had the opportunity to make many friends
in India but the one who impressed me the most
was Ravi Chaturvedi, a commentator-chronicler of
class and caliber." ---Wes Hall
"I grew up listening to Prof. Ravi Chaturvedi's
cricket commentary in Hindi. I admired the ease
and natural flair with which he commentated on
cricket." ---Sachin Tendulkar
"Panditji as Chaturvedi is known is a
multifaceted personality and has varied interests.
The Caribbean Islands are of special interest to
him." ---Sunil Gavaskar
"What has impressed us is the felicity with
which he manages to describe a game which is
very alien to the Hindi language and through his
commentary has taken the game to the villages."
On his fifth visit to the twin islands of Trinidad &
Tobago, Prof. Ravi Chaturvedi, Professor of Zoology
at Delhi University and pioneer Hindi cricket
commentator added an emotional touch to his trip.
The following is his Ethos of Trinidad
ETHOS OF TRINIDAD
It is not a visit. It is a pilgrimage to the land of Eric
Williams, Basdeo Pandey, George Chambers, Noor
Hassan Ali, Kamla Persad-Bissessar; Sir Learie
Constantine, CLR James, Vaidya Naipaul, Mike
Gibbes; Jeffrey Stollmeyer, Harold Burnett (my two
close friends who helped me in providing material on
West Indies cricket), Lawrence Murray, Ramcharetar
Rickhi (called him Bhaiji), sister-in-law Sita (both
bestowed love and affection abundantly on my
family); Ellis 'Pus' Achong (inventor of chinaman),
Sonny Ramadhin (the mystery spinner), Brian Lara
(the holder of batting records) and Hasley Crawford
(Olympic sprinter gold medalist); the land of cricket,
calypso, rum and the Trini Possi; humming bird and
scarlet ibis. The memory of the Commentary Box at
the Queen's Park, Oval in 1976 with my recently
deceased colleague Suresh Saraiya and a dear
friend David Lamy (now member, TATT Board) Clive
Pantin and Alvin Corneil sharing mike with me is
revived on this visit.
The land named by the Spanish explorer
Christopher Columbus in July 1498 as Trinidad when
he saw three peaks emerging from the ocean and
dedicated it to the Holy Trinity.
It is to this land people from my region in India
the first batch of Indians came to Trinidad on May
30, 1845 on the boat Fatah-al-Razak (victory to
Allah, the sustainer).
The memories of those cherished moments and
the names of those who made them, sweeping
across over the years form a kaleidoscope and left
an indelible mark on my mind.
These men and momentous moments of their
lives are permanently etched in my memory. To this
land known as Trinidad I have come for the fifth
time with bowed head to pay my humble respects
to the friendly people of Trinidad & Tobago. Please
accept my greetings as I say Namaskar to all of you
and best wishes to the Muslim community of the
country during holy Ramdaan.
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