Sourav Ganguly survived a scare at his very own Eden Gardens when the club house lift of more than 29 years old malfunctioned and the former India captain had to be pulled out using a stool on the eve of the second Test versus New Zealand.
On his way to his office on the first floor, the old manually operated grill door lift got stuck between the two levels and the securitymen quickly pressed into action to avoid any mishap.
“We quickly disconnected the power and manually opened the door. A stool was lowered inside and Dada came out by climbing on it,” a security official told PTI.
A switch-over in power supply led to this embarrassing incident around 5pm.
“When such things happen we quickly turn off the power and open the grill lock manually,” the security added.
The lift was installed during the renovation work of the stadium way back in 1987 when it hosted the World Cup final, a former CAB secretary said.
The fabled Eden has gone for a major facelift in the 2011 World Cup but the age old lift has remained untouched and incidentally this is the only lift that the iconic BC Roy Clubhouse has.
“We have proposal to change the lift and install a high tech automatic one but it will take sometime,” the official added.
Meanwhile, Ganguly said that the Eden Bell looks better than the historic Lord’s bell.
“It looks better than the bell at Lord’s. The bell will be rung by none other than Kapil Dev on the opening day of the match. There is also a brand new scoreboard where replays will look like television,” Ganguly, who had rung the historic Lord’s five-minute bell in 2014, said.
Come tomorrow legendary allrounder Kapil Dev will become the first cricketer to ring the Eden Bell to mark the start of second Test match between India and New Zealand, which will be India’s 250th Test on home soil.
To make the event memorable, Ganguly has undertaken a set of path breaking activities.
“It is important that people get to see the history of the game. Then they have the feeling of being part of a special occasion. The 250th match inside the ground and a picture gallery showcasing the journey of the game in this country since inception is going to make their visit memorable,” he said.
The CAB has also created 250 special gold coins that would be given out to the players of both the teams and board members who come in as guests. Besides, there would also be a special carnival zone in the K and L blocks, where there will be game zones for children, food parlours, styling area, gaming arena and cricket zones.
“We have something everyday. At lunch on opening day we have a talk show featuring Virender Sehwag, VVS Laxman and Boria Majumdar among others. On the second day, we will felicitate Mohammad Shami and Wriddhiman Saha with a memento of Tiger crystal, along with the board officials. We are also having an indoor cricket with the corporates. They have incidentally bought most of the tickets,” he added.
On the newly laid wicket, former captain said: “We have done a wonderful work with the ground. It has been raining regularly. It’s so early in the season, but still we are good to begin the Test match even today. The groundsmen have done a tremendous job.
“It is an iconic venue. And unless it has world class facilities, it will not live up to its billing. We have begun with the Test match, and by the time IPL comes a lot more will be done,” Ganguly signed off.