Cricket memorabilia fetches Rs 1.1 million

Published: Monday, July 26, 2004, 23:53 [IST]
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Kolkata:The gentleman's game came to the succour of underprivileged children, as an auction of rare cricket memorabilia, including a piece of Irish linen containing autographs of 97 legends, raised Rs 11.16 lakh at a charity auction in Kolkata.

Taken from the private collection of a cricket crazy autograph hunter Nishant Singhal, the items which went under the hammer included miniature bats bearing signatures of past and present greats of the game, autograph books and souvenirs.

The linen, the piece de resistance of the lot, fetched a staggering Rs 4.25 lakh while the autographs of the 1933-34 Indian team went for Rs 2.40 lakh.

The 90 cm X 60 cm linen, with autographs of cricketing greats like Rohan Kanhai, Imran Khan, Dennis Lilee, Sunil Gavaskar, Hanif Mohammad, Kapil Dev, Richie Benaud, Steve Waugh and Hansie Cronje, was bought by a businessman Jagdish Sarda at a glittering auction dinner at a five star hotel last night.

However, an autograph book with signatures including that of legendary bowler and bodyline exponent D R Jardine went for only Rs 5,000, the same as a bat containing autographs of West Indians on their 1974 tour to India, which marked the arrival of a new hero in Vivian Richards into the cricketing world.

Indian cricket's legendary spin trio of Bishen Singh, B S Chandrasekhar and E A S Prasanna, along with the feminine face of the game Mandira Bedi were present at the auction, the proceeds from which would be used to fund the 'Bless a Child' programme of the Lions Club International.

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