THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Before the fight, comes the food. Members of the India and West Indies teams flew in to the city on Tuesday for the fifth and final ODI to be played on November 1. With the players taken away to the hotel amid fans chanting the names of their favourites, there was no public activity. What came out instead was what the players would be gorging on.
True to the traditions of Kerala, there will be a lot of seafood on offer, something that the state is known for producing. Sources at Leela Raviz, Kovalam, where the teams are staying, said a rich variety of dishes have been prepared to satisfy the taste buds of the players. Indians prefer sea food varieties prepared in typical Kerala style. For them, there will be lots of that fare. While seer fish, sardine and mackerel are directly procured from the Vizhinjam harbour, backwater items such as lobsters, pearl spot fish and crabs are brought from the Ashtamudi lake in Kollam. The players can enjoy these with traditional Kerala favourites such as appam, puttu and North Indian breads.
Hotel sources said authentic central Kerala dishes like mappas and curry garnished with mango will be prepared for the host team. Kebabs made of chicken and mutton will be provided as additional dishes for players from the northern parts of the country. Interestingly, beef has been excluded from the dining table due to a lack of demand from the players.
Members of the visiting team have also sought fish delicacies apart from pasta and wood-fired pizzas. Sources said they have asked for Thai dishes. Other than that, the guests will be served Indian curries with grilled chicken and fish, as has been requested by the team management. In the entire process, only rice bran oil will be used.
Team sources revealed that the diet on match-days will be decided by dieticians accompanying the squads. Their requirements have already been passed on to the hotel management.The West Indies team is visiting Thiruvananthapuram after a big gap of 30 years. The last time they came here, in 1987, the visitors beat India by nine wickets. The team lead by Jason Holder was given a warm welcome before being shifted to the hotel in Kovalam.
The Indians, understandably, received a warmer welcome as fans filled the air with chants of “Kohli”, “Dhoni” when the team came out of the airport. Head coach Ravi Shastri was the first one to come out, followed by skipper Kohli and others. They are expected to train on Wednesday.
Khaleel warned for Samuels send-off
DUBAI: Indian pacer Khaleel Ahmed was Tuesday warned and handed a demerit point for giving an aggressive send-off to West Indies’ Marlon Samuels during the fourth ODI in Mumbai. Ahmed was found guilty of a Level 1 breach in the ICC Code of Conduct. He violated Article 2.5, which relates to “using language, actions or gestures which disparage or which could provoke an aggressive reaction from a batter upon his dismissal during the match”.