Sandip Patil fails to live up to expectation in Indo-Pak Test series at Nagpur
Stark : Getting awayIt’s a long way from the arms of Britain’s Prince Andrew, 23, but, last fortnight, former soft-porn star and royal paramour Koo Stark, 26, popped up without much murmur on the capital’s cocktail circuit. Stark, who hit international headlines October last, when she took off for a,Stark : Getting awayIt’s a long way from the arms of Britain’s Prince Andrew, 23, but, last fortnight, former soft-porn star and royal paramour Koo Stark, 26, popped up without much murmur on the capital’s cocktail circuit. Stark, who hit international headlines October last, when she took off for a secret tryst on the Caribbean island of Mustique with the British monarch’s second son, was up to no such tricks in India. Travelling with a girl-friend, she had trotted up to Ladakh on her way back from a holiday in Bali. Looking more like a scrubbed schoolgirl – no make-up, with her blonde hair clipped short – than a sex siren, Stark seemed amazed that her renown had spread so wide. Pursued relentlessly by the western press since I’affaire Andy, a startled Stark quipped before vanishing from the garden party at a diplomat’s house: “Journalists? Here too?”Saeed and Madhur: Playing parentsIt’s one team that has survived the vagaries of high competition and divorce. And for Saeed Jaffrey and ex-wife Madhur Jaffrey, the year has been full of high points – both here and abroad, where they reside. Last fortnight, they were both signed up by the high priest of the Hindi film industry Ramesh Sippy, for his next venture Sagar, which also has Dimple Kapadia making her re-debut. Madhur, who acted in a number of James Ivory and Ismail Merchant productions, which included an award-winning cameo in Shakespeare wala, has been acclaimed for her role in Heat and Dust. In Sagar she plays the mother of Rishi Kapoor, while Saeed plays the father of Dimple Kapadia. Saeed dismisses the reported strain between the two by saying “We get on famously. And Madhur really hits it off with my wife Jennifer (a BBC producer). Our relationship is delightfully incestuous.”advertisementPatil: Flight of fancyCricketers these days have assumed the role of gods – at least as far as their fans and the Government is concerned. And last fortnight two incidents amplified the glorification of the men in white who send crowds reeling in hysteria. When Sandip Patil, the bearded cricketer-cum-film star-cum-journalist was summoned for the Indo-Pak Test series at Nagpur, the last flight from Bombay had departed. The wheels of the Maharashtra Government moved swiftly and Patil was bundled onto a government plane, normally strictly used for VIP’s and disasters. and deposited at his destination. Eyebrows rose, questions were asked about who footed the bill for the solitary flight, and why Patil was given such special treatment. Patil obviously angered many, much more when he totted up just six runs in his first innings at Nagpur and followed it by a miserable score of 26 in the second innings. Quipped a sports columnist: “Dashing Patil to replace Amarnath was like rushing Hema Malini to fill in for Shabana!”Khan in Bombay: Star drawIf Patil came off a damp squib at Nagpur, Imran Khan, the dashing Pakistani cricket player proved more than ever that he reigns, supreme. Cried an ardent fan before the superstar of the pitch decided against coming for the Indo-Pak Test series: “Cricket without Imran is a big bore.” Last fortnight, Bombay’s cricket fans were squealing with delight when Khan descended on the city for the Abid Ali Benefit Match. And there was an additional bonus for them – a book by Khan which was released just two days before he arrived. Priced at Rs 65, 4,000 copies of the book were air-dashed from London to coincide with Khan’s arrival. Hysteria held sway as thousands of swooning crowds mobbed Khan at the match to have copies of his books autographed. Despite the presence of film stars, and cricket luminaries, it was clearly “Imran, Imran” – as the crowds chanted – all the way.