This World Cup appears sadly jinxed and irrevocably
struck by tragedy. Bob Woolmers death in Kingston
just 24 hours after Pakistan were knocked out by
Ireland is of course the most high-profile. But there
have been other losses that understandably have not
attracted as much attention.
In fact the first bit of sad news that came through
from the Caribbean occurred four days before the
opening ceremony when West Indian fast bowling legend
Reverend Wes Hall lost his eldest son in a drowning
accident in Barbados.
The 42-year-old John Woodroffe had arrived at his
fathers home just hours before with his family on
holiday from Toronto, Canada when he decided to go for
a swim in the sea. He never returned.
Hall, one of crickets all-time greats, was a former
president of the West Indies Cricket Board and a
member of the organizing committee in Barbados. He had
been to India in February as part of the Barbados
Tourism Board where he spoke fondly to this
correspondent of another son, Shaun, a former jockey
and now trainer also based in Toronto.
John left behind his wife and 12-year-old son.
Bangladesh cricket enjoyed one of their greatest days
on Saturday when they shocked former champions India
at Port-of-Spain in their opening game, a defeat that
ultimately saw Indian make a shock exit at the first
Just the day before however the Bangladeshi suffered a
twin-tragedy when two young cricketers died in a road
Qasi Manjural Islam, who at 22 years 316 days had
played in six Tests and 25 ODIs between 2003-04 and
2005-06 was killed when the motorbike he was riding,
collided with a truck near Khulna. It meant that he
became the youngest Test cricketer to die.
Killed along with Manjural was first-class player
Sajjadul Hasan (28), a veteran of 50 first-class games
in which he had scored 2,443 runs at 28.08. They were
on the way back from a match in Fatullah.
Bangladesh skipper Habibul Bashar dedicated Saturdays
victory to their memory at the end of the match.
While all of Ireland was celebrating their amazing
upset of Pakistan and remarkable entry into the Super
8s, they too suffered a sad loss.
Just three days after Woolmers mysterious death, Bob
Kerr, a former President of the Irish Cricket Union,
died in his Kingston hotel room of a heart attack. He
was 68. The passing certainly cast a shadow over his
nations celebrations of their historic cricket feat.
We all know how emotionally charged Indian cricket
fans are. But imagine a 17-year-old dying of a heart
According to agency reports, the teenager, Ramparvesh
Rai of Adalpur village in Samastipur district of
Bihar, suffered a fatal heart attack as soon as
Bangladesh sealed their victory in Port-of-Spain on
Another victim of a heart attack was 28-year-old Raju
who collapsed and died in front of his TV set.
A couple of suicides have also come to my notice.
According to a Reuters report, the defeat at the
hands of Sri Lanka pushed a 28-year-old farmer in West
Bengal, Mahadeb Sarkar to hang himself.
His wife Sadhana also made a suicide attempt but the
rope broke and she survived.
Did someone say cricket is only a game?