Is State’s success in cricket & economics related?

More proof that the most imaginative cricket writing in India comes not from cricket writers but those outside the press box.

Spurred by Uttar Pradesh’s Ranji Trophy showing, Swaminathan S. Anklesaria Aiyar—a fully certified cricket freak—sticks his neck out and suggests a correlation between cricketing success and economic clout in today’s Sunday Times.

Aiyar says the fact that UP has been a finalist in three of the last four years, winning the trophy once, is a sign that India’s largest state is poised for economic take-off.

“I noticed this in my youth in regard to Karnataka. In the 1950s and 1960s, Karnataka was not economically backward but not a powerhouse either. Nor did it boast great cricketing prowess. But then it produced a string of great cricketes in the late 1960s and early 1970s—B.S. Chandrashekhar, Erapalli Prasanna, Gundappa Vishwanath, Brijesh Patel. The State was Ranji Trophy finalist in four of the ten years between 1973-74 and 1982-83, winning twice.

“Karnataka’s cricket upsurge was followed by an economic upsurge. It gained stature first as an engineering hub, then as a hub of information technology. It had some good industries even in the 1960s but only later did it become a powerhouse…. A look at other Ranji Trophy finalists through the years [Bombay, Bengal, Delhi, Gujarat] also shows similar trends, however halting.”

Conversely, is Karnataka’s depleting fortunes in domestic cricket also related to the setting of the economic sun, to the shine going out of Bangalore?

Read the full article: Is UP about to take off?

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