Dhoni's blast

Sir, — It was a blistering knock by Mahendra Singh Dhoni who has confirmed his growing reputation as an explosive right-handed batsman, nearly as belligerent as the Australian wicket-keeper Adam Gilchrist. Thanks to his monumental, unbeaten 183 off just 145 balls, India made light of a huge total put up by the Sri Lankans and galloped to a comfortable six-wicket victory in Jaipur.

Dhoni, with his scintillating brand of meaty strokes, treated a capacity crowd of 26,000 to some brilliant fireworks display. In his thrill-a-minute run-fest, Dhoni also sped past several records.

The Sri Lankan bowlers, apart from Muttiah Muralitharan, suffered brutally at the hands of Dhoni, who conjured up unconventional but thoroughly effective ways to send the ball soaring into the stands — no matter where it was pitched.

With his knock, Mahendra Singh Dhoni ensured the nation celebrated Diwali a day early.

Dhoni is fine proof of how far intelligent application can take talent.

Significantly, his success caps a hat-trick of wins for India and shows how well this team can respond even if Sachin falls early.

D. Giridhar Chennai More Anjum Chopras

Sir, — Kudos to Doordarshan for looking beyond the usual `glamour quotient' when it comes to telecasting cricket shows. It has roped in India's woman cricketer Anjum Chopra for match analyses during its live telecast of the India-Sri Lanka one-day series. This is a move that is sure to provide a much-needed boost to women's cricket in India, which has, unfortunately, failed to take off in the country. This despite the fact that the Indian women have shown better consistency on the cricket field than their male counterparts. It is my sincere hope that other television channels follow suit and enlist the services of more women cricketers to provide analyses instead of mere `glamour dolls'.

Arjun Chaudhuri Kolkata Eye on archery

Sir, — The story on national ranking archery at Jamshedpur (The Sportstar dated October 29), which provided a thorough analysis and assessment of the steady progress made by India in the international arena, made for good and inspiring reading.

Courtesy, the careful planning of Archery Association of India, consistent and constant exposure of the Indian archers to top international competitions seems to be finally yielding dividends, with our archers improving by leaps and bounds. Did somebody say that a `diamond' is nothing but coal made good under pressure?

Suresh Manoharan Hyderabad Come back Mahesh and Paes

Sir, — Paes and his partner, Nenad Zimonjic, should be applauded for their superlative performance in beating Mahesh Bhupathi and Damm to reach the semifinal of a top-ranking ATP tournament, recently.

Earlier, Mahesh and Damm had created the biggest upset of the tournament when they outclassed the world doubles champions, the Bryan twins, Bob and Mike, in the first round.

What strikes me, though, is the sad case of a missed opportunity: two players of the same country playing in the same tournaments, but partnering players of other countries, instead of each other. Still, congratulations to Paes and his partner for the great victory.

Congratulations also to Mahesh and Damm for having beaten the Bryan twins.

We look forward to more such great performances from Mahesh and Paes, but we will be happier if they team up again and play like they did in the past when the duo won Grand Slam events.

Keep it up Mahesh and Paes. Er. Ahmad Rais Siddiqi (Alig) New Delhi