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August 2015

Google turns Alphabet, Page turns Pichai

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On the morning of 11th August India woke up to the news of Sundar Pichai who was made the Chief Executive Officer of multi-billion company Google. But getting into the logistics of what has happened at Google is a little complex to comprehend. Pichai, though the CEO,  is not the head of the Google that we knew. Google has been slimmed down to make way for Alphabet Inc. headed by Larry Page.

What is Alphabet?  Alphabet Inc is the new mother company  and Google has now become a subset of Alphabet. Yes you heard it right. Alphabet will replace Google as the publicly traded entity and all shares of Google will automatically convert into the same number of shares of Alphabet, with all the same rights. Larry Page will be the CEO of the new mother company and will include, besides Google, units such as Calico, X lab and life sciences projects. Google’s investment arms, Ventures and Capital, will also be part of Alphabet. To suffice, Pichai although CEO is still playing second fiddle to Page and Brin. But this does not bring down his credentials.

Pichai has been a valuable asset to Google which has been tested and proven time and again. Since joining Google in 2004 as vice president of product management, Pichhai oversaw search and consumer products such as iGoogle, Google Toolbar, Desktop Search and Gadgets, Google Pack, and Gears. In 2011, Pichai became senior VP of Google Chrome and Apps, which includes the Chrome browser and operating system, Gmail, Calendar, Docs, and Drive.

Pichai is a popular man. Talk of the town was that Twitter  approached Pichai for the role of CEO. Google, in order to keep him, decided to kick start their new business venture along with organisational changes , giving Pichai the CEO title while keeping the same set of duties. Apparently Twitter tried to hire him three years ago and got very close but Google countered with a huge package. Pichai was also a front runner in the race to become the CEO of Microsoft.

All in all, Google is now Alphabet, Alphabet owns Google and Google has a new CEO(Pichai) who reports to the old CEO (Page).

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Perfect Shade of Blue

Indian opener Mayank Agarwal smashed a brilliant 130 along with skipper Unmukt Chand, who complemented his teammate with a useful 90, as India A thrashed South Africa A by eight wickets in their second tri-series match. Chasing 245 for a win, India A reached their target with more than 12 overs to spare, courtesy a 219-run opening stand between Agarwal and Chand at the MA Chidambaram Stadium in Chennai. India A are now in contention for a place in the final with a match to go. After a disappointing opener which saw the hosts suffer a 119 run loss to Australia A, it was a treat to watch the Indian team hit back and even managing to earn a bonus point for their efforts.

The skipper of the team is the one to look out for. Unmukt Chand, proved his mettle in both the matches by far by scoring a 52 and 90 respectively. Shooting to prominence by leading India to their first U-19 Cricket World Cup victory outside Asia in 2012. With this achievement Chand become the shining star of Indian Cricket overnight.

The latest addition to the line of Delhi batsmen, Chand is often compare to his predecessor  Virat Kohli and MS Dhoni for his calm, composed stature on field. Having had an illustrious career at the junior level Umukt Chand dreams of breaking it into the senior team “Each cricketer begins his journey with a lighter shade of blue and gradually reaches his dream. I  have represented my nation as an Under 19 player, an U-23 player and in the ‘A’ tours. But what I wore then were the lighter shades of blue, even wearing the dark blue of Delhi Daredevils and was a lighter shade for me. The blue Indian jersey is the perfect shade of blue to me and the dream is to wear it as soon as possible and then continue to embrace it..”

Sky is the limit for this young man but the pressing concern has been the inconsistency in his performance over the years since his glorious Townsville days. Known to be a “Big match” player Chand has failed to deliver since his transfer to senior cricket as well as in the Indian Premier League where he has given a score of indifferent performances.With India playing a lot of cricket in the next two years, performing well in the tri-series will be key in consolidating a position in the senior team and finally taking the big step.

So, here’s wishing Unmukt Chand a very prosperous forthcoming cricket career. Hope he proves his mettle in the upcoming matches  for India A Team and success kisses his feet in the long run.

The Return of Football with a spice of drama

After a three-month hiatus, mainstream football returned with a bang this weekend. With two exciting matches lined up fans of the sport were in for a treat. The match that took place on Saturday saw Wolfsberg defeat the illustrious German giants Bayern Munich on penalties. Pep Guardiola’s side lost as one of their key players Xabi Alonso missed a chance to convert a penalty.

The other match was scheduled on ‘Super Sunday’. It was no doubt a crackling affair. FA cup champions Arsenal were to face previous season EPL winners Chelsea. Now anyone who follows the English Premier League would know about the ongoing saga between the managers of both the clubs. On one side we have the technical genius Jose Mourinho and on the other is the Premiers League’s longest-serving manager, Arsene Wenger. Both the managers couldn’t be further apart in terms of their style of play. While Wenger is associated with stability and calmness who famously led Arsenal through an invisible season, Mourinho relies more on quick results and signings. The two share a rather frosty relationship nothing less than a saas-bahu saga filled with cat calling and passing snide comments on each other to the press.

The build up to th London derby doesn’t end with the managers, the players also have some amount of history with the clubs. The most anticipated aspect would be no doubt the Arsenal goal keeper, Peter Cech, who is a Chelsea legend moved to Arsenal this season and Ofcourse how can we forget the former Gunners Captain Cesc Fabregas. The Gunners have still not come to terms with his year old transfer.

The match was no doubt exciting with 21 year old Alex Oxalade Chamberlain fondly known as ‘The Ox’ scoring a stunner which ended the deadlock between the two teams. This  win not only won Arsenal the Community Shield it also held special significance for Wenger who finally succeeded in his 14th attempt in defeating Jose Mourinho.

The match ended on a dramatic note with Wenger snubbing Mourinho by avoiding the customary post match handshake. Mourinho wasted no time and cribbed about the incident to the media during the post match press conference. As the saying goes somethings in life never change. Till then we can sit back and enjoy this drama with maybe a bucket of popcorn and coke in hand 🙂

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