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Extraordinary display of Sportsmanship
as Suvro sets new benchmark

27th April 2019
Where there is a will there is a way. So is the case for the world’s first blade-runner cricketer Suvro Joarder albeit with dollops of help from Cricket Association of Bengal.
In 2008, Suvro had established himself as one of the talents within the Bengal cricket hierarchy. A prolific domestic season saw him score 535 runs and pick up 22 wickets in just nine elite matches. In fact it earned him a Bengal U-22 call-up. However, his dream was shattered by a freak highway bike accident that took his right leg away knee downwards. He was playing for Excelsiors at that time.
Eleven years down the line, he is playing for Excelsiors club again as the first disabled cricketer in the N C Chatterjee Trophy 1018-19. He scored 13 runs off 18 deliveries with two boundaries. Though Excelsiors lost the match to Albert Sporting Club by 11 runs, humanity and sportsman spirit won.
But this miracle was possible when Tournament Sub-Committee permitted him to register for the CAB Second Division last September after the proposal was placed before it. And after Suvro expressed his desire to play for his old club, they came forward and signed him on September 15.
“I think Cricket is the real winner today. the term ‘Cricket’ is much bigger than just a mere game. It also stands for unity, brotherhood and humanity. Suvro was a very talented cricketer. He showed his determination by establishing himself as one of the leading disabled cricketers in the country. At times, it is important to take a holistic view of the matter and as an exceptional case considering the unfortunate incident that had taken place earlier, the Association allowed him to play with certain conditions to keep the spirit of sportsmanship flying,” said Avishek Dalmiya, elated to see Suvro take guard today.
“Yes we signed him. But frankly it would not have been possible without the initiative and efforts of Avishek Dalmiya. He encouraged Suvro to sign and then he wrote to Albert Club so that they allow a substitute runner and fielder to see Suvro’s dream come to reality. The tournament committee had to change some by-laws also to accommodate him. All that was done and today we can proudly say that cricket is an inclusive sport,” said K Subramanium, Cricket Secretary, Excelsiors Club.
Albert Sporting Club General Secretary Md. Moinuddin Bin Moksud showed his gesture of goodwill and supported the cause when he wrote back “We have no objection if a runner while batting and a substitute during fielding is provided for Subhro Joarder, being a physically challenged cricketer, on humanitarian grounds.”
Tournament Committee Chairman Subrata Sarkar said: "The matter was discussed in a committee meeting based on a special agenda and amendments were made to allow Suvro play provided no objections came from the opposing team regarding substitutions."
It was indeed a unique gesture shown by the Association which has always has been one of the premier organizations in terms of setting a benchmark.

Arindam Basu