Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Book Review: Mohali Mystery

By Amna Farzand Ali

Cricket is the game that has become a source of enthusiasm, happiness and sorrow among the lovers of this sport not only in Pakistan but around the world. Although it is an intellectual challenge to document something on this sport.

Gideon Haigh, an Australian journalist, who writes about sports especially cricket, had once remarked that the appearance of a completely fresh and unpredictable cricket book was a rare event. Indeed there are only a few worthy writers who continue doing it for decades with passion and dedication. 

Ehsan Ali Qureshi is one of those prolific authors of Pakistan, having done a series of World Cup books with ‘Mohali Mystery’ being the latest publication. His eye-witnessed accounts of the most prestigious global cricket event, held after every four years, are worthwhile addition to the literary world of sports books. 

The foreword of this book has been penned by a superstar cricketer, Rashid Latif, who was also a former Pakistan captain. He has summarized Pakistan’s journey in the World Cup, sharing his thoughts on glories and agonies in the marquee cricket event. 

Actually this book ‘Mohali Mystery’ is based on the author’s own travelogue experience of the Indian cities of Mohali and Mumbai. Mohali’s Punjab Cricket Association Stadium was the venue where the Indian cricket team defeated our national cricket team in the World Cup 2011 semifinal.

The writing style of the author is smooth and elegant. He has shared his experiences about his stay in India during both the big matches in such a way that the readers can derive the similar feeling by going through it. He has also highlighted the different ‘tourist attraction places’ of the Indian cities and the open-arms hospitality of his Indians companions. 

The inclusion of Shahid Khan Afridi’s interview seems the best addition to the content. Ehsan Qureshi conducted this interview in which the then Pakistan captain has tried to clear all the controversies regarding the match-fixing and the suspicious dropped catches of Sachin Tendulkar in the all-important semifinal. 

Shahid Afridi has also mentioned the political aspect in a light mood. Because the then Prime Minister of Pakistan, Syed Yousaf Raza Gilani, along with some state dignitaries was also there to attend this ‘cricketing debacle’ at the Mohali’s Punjab Cricket Association Stadium. 

The readers of this book will also find the comparative analysis of previous World Cup matches and the performance charts glimpses of the cricket stars of the Pakistani and Indian teams. It also contains the profile of the players from other countries who performed well in the mega event. 

Last but not the least, Mohali Mystery also contains detailed score sheets of all the matches of the World Cup 2011. While browsing the score sheets the readers would find some interesting commentary about the super players of winning teams who influenced the matches significantly. 

The inclusion of statistical analysis of the previous World Cup matches offers a source of handy information for quick referencing of historical records for the ease of cricket lovers. Besides the informative contents of the book; layout design, paper quality, the lively captured pictures of the semi-final and the final matches along with pictorial coverage of the public places of India are eye-catching. 

Keeping in view the cricket-mania within Asia, this book should be a part of personal collection as well as acquired by the libraries because it will attract cricket-loving readers. 

***For further details about Mohali Mystery, please write to jumbopublishing@yahoo.com or call Asad Raza at 0333-2304024

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