Bengal begs in Ganguly as saviour in Ranji

Published: Thursday, December 30, 2004, 0:06 [IST]
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Kolkata:Responding to an SOS from his beleaguered state side, Indian skipper Sourav Ganguly has decided to turn out for Bengal in the crucial Elite division Group A Ranji Trophy match against Madhya Pradesh beginning here from December 31.

''Yes, I'll be playing,'' Ganguly said here today, confirming what was being speculated for the last few days.

Ganguly, who returned to the city last night after the 20 day trip to Bangladesh, came to the Eden Gardens for about half an hour during the day and watched some of his Bengal teammates practising.

Ganguly, however, said that he would not lead the side.

''No, no, I have no plans to lead,'' Ganguly said, responding to queries from scribes.

After four back-to-back defeats, Bengal are in danger of being relegated from the Elite division.

Having so far gleaned only four points from six games, the hosts need at least two points to avoid demotion to the Plate division.

A desperate Cricket Association of Bengal officials have been fervently requesting Ganguly to play the side's concluding group tie for the last few days.

They have also brought back from retirement veteran spinner Utpal Chatterjee for the match.

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