PORT OF SPAIN, Trinidad (CMC):Fabian Allen lashed an aggressive half-century in his first match of the season and second in first-class cricket, to help Jamaica Scorpions keep their noses in front on day two of their eighth round game against Trinidad and Tobago Red Force here Saturday.After eking out a small 27-run first-innings lead, Scorpions found themselves stumbling badly on 66 for five in their second innings at Queen’s Park Oval before the 21-year-old arrived at the crease to pummel a top score of 60 from 68 balls, and help lift the visitors to 172 for seven at the close an overall lead of 199 runs heading into Sunday’s third day.Allen blasted five fours and four sixes as he posted his maiden first-class half-century, but, more importantly, put on 65 for the sixth wicket with wicketkeeper Devon Thomas, who made 38.Antiguan Thomas faced 59 balls and counted six fours before falling leg before wicket to pacer Marlon Richards, who finished with two for 25.Allen added a further 33 for the seventh wicket with Damion Jacobs (14 not out) before finally departing.Seamer Rayad Emrit, with three for 30, had done the damage earlier as Scorpions’ top order failed to find an answer to a purposeful Red Force attack.The hosts, though, produced yet another disappointing batting display to be bowled out for 173, after resuming the day on 79 for three.Captain and opener Kyle Hope, unbeaten on 33 overnight, top-scored with 67 while left-hander Yannic Cariah, starting the day on 19, made 45 providing hope for Red Force in a positive 88-run, fourth-wicket stand.Captain and left-arm spinner Nikita Miller claimed four for 39 while leg-spinner Damion Jacobs picked up three for 46.SCOREBOARDSCORPIONS 201RED FORCE 1st Innings(overnight 79 for three)*K. Hope b Miller 67Y. Cariah lbw b Miller 45Imran Khan run out 0+S. Katwaroo b Jacobs 10R. Emrit not out 10M. Richards lbw b Miller 1B. Charles c Blackwood b Miller 4S. Cottrell b Jacobs 1Extras (b7, lb9, w2, nb3) 21Total (all out, 84.2 overs) 174Fall of wickets: 1-17, 2-21, 3-49, 4-137, 5-137, 6-152, 7-156, 8-161, 9-173, 10-174.Bowling: Mindley 13-6-23-1 (nb3), Green 14-5-30-1 (w2), Blackwood 4-1-7-0, Jacobs 23.2-2-46-3, Miller 28-8-39-4, Campbell 2-0-13-0.SCORPIONS 2nd InningsT. Griffith lbw b S Cottrell 21J. Campbell lbw b Richards 5J. Blackwood b Charles 16P. Palmer b Emrit 5A. McCarthy lbw b R Emrit 1+D. Thomas lbw Richards 38F. Allen c Hope b Emrit 60D. Jacobs not out 14D. Green not out 4Extras (lb3, w5) 8Total (7 wkts, 45 overs) 172Fall of wickets: 1-14, 2-38, 3-51, 4-53, 5-67, 6-131, 7-164.Bowling: Cottrell 8-1-32-1, Richards 8-1-25-2, Charles 12-7-35-1, Emrit 8-2-30-3, Imran Khan 9-0-47-0.Position: Scorpions lead by 199 runs.Toss: Red Force.Umpires: Zahid Bassarath, Deighton Butler.
– improved quality needed in light of Regional, International companies’ presenceIn light the presence of regional and international companies, innovation and competitiveness are essential for the sustainability of local businesses as Guyana prepares for first oil.GNBS Head of Legal Metrology Department, Shailendra RaiThis is according to the Guyana National Bureau of Standards (GNBS) Head of Legal Metrology Department, Shailendra Rai, who told a gathering of business owners and managers at the recent GNBS Quality Awards ceremony that the presence of foreign companies will make it more difficult for local companies to compete in the Guyanese market if they are not prepared.“So it is very important for us to be very innovative as we move forward in terms of developing the quality of our products and services. Local companies should look at not only the local market but also Regional and International markets as well because that is the aim to move forward…the Bureau commits to working with companies (stakeholders) to ensure that we provide the necessary technical assistance and other forms of assistance to help local businesses in this regard,” he stated.According to Rai, a business can only be successful if it is able to sustain itself. “It is important that you sustain what you achieve because if you don’t do that, then your competitive advantage would decrease,” he noted.Meanwhile, Guyana’s Business Minister, Haimraj Rajkumar explained that for the companies that copped awards at this year’s event hosted by the GNBS, it speaks volumes.He said that they would have been judged on international standards and for those that participated but did not emerge victorious, they would have also displayed such quality work to have been selected in the first place.The Minister also noted that more and more businesses in Guyana are developing and expanding with the “Green State” agenda in mind.This, he added, is a move in the right direction and is in keeping with global trends.“There are more efforts of local companies and businesses that embrace sustainable business practices and incorporate with more green initiatives in their operations. As we are seeing these days consumers are demanding more of this and are holding companies to higher standards.”
Indonesia leaves most Indians unscathed. Nobody wants to be an Indonesian, not even the Sindhis. The music slams into my chest as soon as I enter the darkened room. The girls are on a small stage belting out the words “Rabba, Rabba” to a psychedelic beat, doing slow half circles in that Punjabi way – one leg bent, a palm outstretched. They are in jeans, sequin tops and pointy-toed boots. Their hair, Indian black, falls straight to their shoulders.I forget to order a beer and instead stand transfixed, taking in three twenty-somethings from Jalandhar in a hotel, The Jakarta Marriott, best known for a suicide bombing last year. Most of those here, swaying to the music or sipping tall, frothy green drinks, are Indonesian; except for a group of thick-waisted Indian men who huddle in a corner of the dance floor.The girls finish their song and an Indonesian man in leather pants shakes his waist-length hair and grabs a mike.“The most beautiful girls in the world are Indian. Miss World, Miss Universe is always from India,” he shouts. A black man in a red track suit nods in agreement. The girls file off stage, another band takes over, and I’m beamed back to reality, like a character out of Star Trek.I first encountered Girlz, to use the band’s name, the night before, at the Indian embassy’s Republic Day reception. There they were, in their painted-on jeans and sequins, alternating between bhangra and Western pop and creating a stir in the Indian community, which had come expecting tandoori chicken and dal makhni, perhaps even a classical dance performance, but certainly not a robotic enactment of a Kylie Minogue video by a band flown in from Bombay.My primary interest was in the food. But one thing led to another and, as the giant room emptied of all but a few stragglers, I found myself seated at a large round table with, among others, Deepa, Disha and Sonali. That’s when I discovered that they’re from Jalandhar…army kids…grew up all over the place… now based in Bombay…would never wear such clothes in Punjab.I found myself holding on to every word, soaking in their accents – public school Punjabi – reacquainting myself with how a single dismissive hand gesture can say “oh him, we used to think he was such a big star, but now he’s just a regular guy to us.”I haven’t lived in India since I last worked there as a journalist more than three years ago. My contacts with Indians here in Indonesia are sporadic, confined to embassy functions on Republic Day and Independence Day, and to the occasional invitation to dinner by some kind older person. So my encounter with the girls hits me with the force of nostalgia, not what you might feel when you run into an old friend after years but, rather, an odd blend of newness and familiarity, like discovering a stranger in a family album.It’s this feeling that I’m here to explore at the Marriott. I head to the corner where the Girlz sit. They remember me from the previous night and soon I strike up a conversation with Deepa, at 27 the oldest of the three, and so, at least in my mind, the band leader.We employ the special code that Indians are genetically programmed to use with each other, allowing a swift and unforgiving determination of social worth that both makes subsequent conversation possible, and establishes its tone and tenor. In less than the time it takes to finish a beer, I learn about a brother who is a doctor in Arkansas, a sister-in-law who works on Wall Street, a great-grandfather who went to Princeton, a grandfather who fought a famous case at the Supreme Court, a father in the army and a Welsh woman somewhere in the family tree.Deepa, of course, finds out about a diplomat father, a brother at Oxford, a master’s degree from Princeton and an ethnic mix that’s half Maharashtrian and half Tamil. (Though my involuntary responses to dal makhni and that Rabba Rabba song prove that I’m secretly Punjabi too.)After a while, Deepa whips out a Nokia camera phone and proceeds to show me pictures. There she is in Bombay with Mick Jagger – “he was really cool to hang out with, a really decent person” – playfully cradling a video camera.Here she is with the lead singer of the Pakistani band Junoon, I forget his name. Here’s Deepa at the Eiffel Tower. She tells me about performing in Dubai, Muscat and Sri Lanka, about how someone called them India’s Spice Girls – there used to be five of them – and how she hated it because “it’s so wannabe.”My eyes stray to the knot of Indian men, off the dance floor, but still in a huddle, and my mind wanders to how being an Indian in Indonesia is so much more predictable than being one in America. You don’t feel this country constantly pressing down on you on all sides so you don’t have to make the same effort to maintain your sense of self.In America, you have Indians trying desperately to be American, saying ant when they mean aunt and ruthlessly excising “lift” (for elevator), “trousers” and “air hostess” from their vocabularies. Then you have Indians fighting viciously to remain Indian, hrefusing to say ant when they mean aunt, and devoting their lives to studying 19th century Bengali lesbians or the novels of Shobha De. Then there are the ABCDs, some of whom want to say aunt and wear saris to work – or, better still, complain about how they can’t – and boast about how their fathers read the Times of India. In short, it’s all so complicated.Indonesia leaves most Indians unscathed. Nobody wants to be Indonesian. Even the Sindhis, some of whom have been here for generations, do not confuse business with belonging.You can easily spend 20 years here playing bridge or golf once a week with fellow Indians, having the same friends over for stuffed bhindi and mutton curry, and generally getting on with a life transplanted from Delhi’s Defence Colony or Greater Kailash; except that the servants are better trained and don’t scratch their crotches in front of guests.I turn back to Deepa with her coke-colored drink, her Marlboro Lights and her camera phone with the picture of Mick Jagger.Despite her familiarity, I sense a gulf, a slippage between her India and mine. Deepa is old enough to belong to an India I recognize, young enough to have one leg in an India that I don’t. It saddens me to think that things are changing so fast that before long I’ll feel like a stranger in my own land. Or perhaps that has already happened, leaving me only with a craving for mutton curry and that Rabba Rabba song in my head. Related Items