Former Bengal cricketer debuts in film

Kolkata, Dec 7 (IANS) Former Indian cricket selector and Bengal’s Ranji Trophy winning skipper Sambaran Banerjee has started a new innings and is playing the role of a cricket coach in a yet to be named Bengali film.

Banerjee’s acting debut would see him share screen space with national award winning actor Prasenjit Chatterjee.

‘It is a new experience, a bit like out of syllabus. But since I am related to the cricket field, I don’t think it will be very tough for me to do this role. I was quite comfortable in front of the camera on the day of the film’s launch,’ Banerjee told IANS.

The rest of the shooting of the film, directed by Haranath Chakroborty, would be done from the second week of December.

Banerjee, however, said cricket is his first love and would remain so.

‘While doing this role, both Chakroborty and Chatterjee have been very cooperative. It was not very difficult for me to understand my role,’ said Bengal’s Ranji team captain.

Fiftyseven-year-old Banerjee, who played first class cricket for more than a decade, came close to getting selected to the national cricket team several times, but failed to make the cut.

Banerjee a specialised wicket-keeper of yesteryears, led Bengal to a Ranji Trophy triumph in 1989-90 by beating Delhi in the final at the Eden Gardens.

Banerjee, who now appears as a cricket analyst on the small screen, gave credit for his television appearances for helping him be at ease in front of the camera while shooting for the film.

‘I am used to the camera as I do lots of shows on television. These television appearances have helped me to be at ease while in standing in front of the camera,’ said Banerjee.

‘My role in the film revolves around cricket only. I play the role of a cricket coach and most of my dialogues are related to cricket. There are a few interactions with Chatterjee who plays the role of the father of an aspiring cricketer,’ said Banerjee, who also heads the selection committee of the Bengal cricket team.

Chakroborty was all praise for Banerjee as an actor and said that his presence in his film would give it a realistic look.

‘We have selected Sambaran Banerjee for this role in order to give the film a more realistic look because he is a well-known person from the field of cricket,’ said the film director.

‘Till now he has acted really well and he was quite comfortable in front of the camera,’ Chakroborty told IANS.


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