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India Cricket: BCCI Post World Cup Report Card Pt 2

In Part 1 of this series we covered five areas that the BCCI believes need to be improved if Indian cricket is to crawl out of today's darkness. In this version of the two-part series we discuss the remainder of the BCCI's proposals and determine whether the high-powered meetings (read Kangaroo Court) of April 6 and 7 produced anything of substance, or if it is just plain and simple hogwash.

Increased Under-19 Activity

An excellent idea, on face value. Increased exposure of overseas conditions and environments can only serve to better prepare and toughen the next generation. However, the fact remains that we have done reasonably well in age-group tournaments to date. Whether it be Under-15 or Under-19 World Cups, Indian teams have nearly always made it to the final and actually have gone all the way on some occasions too.

Where Indian cricketers fall over is after this stage, when they get drafted into the Ranji fold and mediocrity earns them statistically spectacular results. The solution is to undertake more A-team tours, so that players progressing from the Under-19 level have a steady stream of stiff competition.

This is not to say quantity is better than quality in this case. Sending teams to Zimbabwe and Bangladesh is a waste of money, as the same level of competition could be found at home. These tourists need to be sent to Australia, New Zealand, England and South Africa. Therein lies the real competition - for now.

Grade: Getting There

State Academies

Forgive me for being so utterly cynical, but the original proposition for the National Cricket Academy was for it to be supported by other state/feeder institutions. As is India's wont, we love the icing taste delightful, but deem it unimportant to do likewise with the sponge.

The idea of state-based academies is a sound one. However, after listening to the same rhetoric for the past five years, I am holding no hope that the ideas will be implemented any time in the next five years.

Grade: Action Please

A "Young" Team for Bangladesh

This one really baffled me. On one hand the BCCI informs us that it will appoint professional selectors who, one would hope, would be more accountable for their decisions. On the not so distant other hand the Board is telling the, as yet, unnamed panel how they should do their job.

Various reports have done the rounds as to which players the BCCI wants dropped. Names such as Sachin Tendulkar, Sourav Ganguly, Zaheer Khan, Harbhajan Singh and Irfan Pathan have been touted in this regard. Undoubtedly, these names were "sourced" from a "source close to" or within the Board - elevating the rumours to 'fact' status.

Point is, if the Board has a disciplinary gripe against the said players, try and sentence them according to the relevant code of conduct. Do not tell your employees how to do their job; a job that you have no qualifications undertake - if you do, why not do it yourself?

Grade: Abysmal

The Management/Coaching Team

Venkatesh Prasad as bowling coach - good move. The guy has qualifications and experience, with a degree of success with the age-group teams he has coached. No harm letting him prove his credentials.

Robin Singh as fielding coach - good move. Same as above and he was an excellent fielder in the pre-Yuvraj and Kaif days.

Ravi Shastri as "Cricket Manager"? I seriously hope that this is only a temporary appointment to buy the BCCI time to find a quality alternative to Greg Chappell. I am not aware of any coaching qualifications that Shastri holds and he certainly has no worthwhile/relevant experience. It is my earnest prayer that his selection is only a temporary measure. If Shastri does see a coaching future for himself, he should get on the first flight to Australia to complete the relevant courses and try and become an understudy to one of the more successful coaches around the world.

In fact, another initiative the BCCI should seriously consider is a coaching structure where talented and capable coaches are identified, given the opportunity to gain the prerequisite qualifications and then placed as an understudy to a successful coach outside of India. After serving their apprenticeship, they can return to India and take charge of a Ranji team in order to show their wares. This, my friends, is a structure that will help Indian cricket immeasurably - in the long run.

Grade: Getting There

I did not touch on the show-cause notice to Tendulkar and Yuvraj because it is not an idea, merely the implementation of an existing policy.

There are many other initiatives that could form Part 3 of this series. Do write in (in the comments section or via email) of any of your own initiatives that you believe will reap rewards. In the meanwhile, be sure to read Part 1 and let your views be known.


Anonymous said...

I believe Irfan Pathan's problems stem from him having this girlfriend in south africa - ever since meeting her, his cricket has gone down the drain. if he would just admit to the world that he has a special lady friend in south africa, all will be well with the world and Irfan can get on with his bowling. It is all over the internet about how he met this beautiful young lady in Port Elizabeth and that they also spent time together in Durban towards the end of last year when India were in South Africa. Just admit it Irfan

Ayush Trivedi said...

I've only read about this mystery woman on one other blog, Cricket Etcetera. Those comments were also posted by "Anonymous" with no proof whatsoever. If you have proof, send it to us and we'll put it up on the appropriate post - the other one that you commented on.

Back to the issue, however, I see no reason why the presence of a significant other in Pathan's life should cause him to lose form so drastically. He can't be making trips to her house at odd hours of the night, hence disrupting his routine, if she lives in Sth Africa, right?

In fact most psychologists will tell u that her presence will most probably serve to help him in the long run.

Reduce the frustration if nothing else :P

Anonymous said...

Well, you are wrong - it will definitely affect him, because he is not able to see her - surely he would want to spend time with her???? she is obviously on his mind all the time. If she was in India, perhaps it would improve his performance, but not miles away in South Africa. He definitely has a girlfriend in South Africa - there is no smoke without fire..............
he was seen with her at Nando's in Port Elizabeth and they were also seen together at his hotel in Durban (Elangeni Hotel) - surely all this must be true!!!

Anonymous said...

My name is Pooja Narayan and my friends and I saw Irfan Pathan with a stunning young woman in Nando's in Port Elizabeth - she was wearing a green blouse with jeans and Irfan was wearing jeans with a long sleeved t-shirt. They did not stay in Nando's for very long. The truly looked very much in love!!!! the way they were looking at each other one could just see the chemistry between them! there is definitely no denying that.

Anonymous said...

the girl Irfan was seen with, is the same girl who appears on rediff cricket website - she had photos taken with Rahul Dravid and Dhoni when they were in Port Elizabeth and she also posed with Shoaib Akhtar and Mohamed Asif.

Anonymous said...


Ayush Trivedi said...

I'm wondering the same thing. I doubt that we're going to see it.

Anonymous said...

well now perhaps people will believe that this girl in south africa is having an influence on Irfan Pathan, as he has not been chosen for the Ireland and England tours - his mind is on this girl in south africa and it is obviously affecting his cricket?

Anonymous said...

yo lot are fucked... everyone just posting up all this bullshit abouut irfan... where is this girl? where are the pictures? whats her name where the proof????? u bloaks are senseless spreading rumors or thinking thats what is happening. i say no girl or maybe he does have a girl but she is not the cause of his problems

Unknown said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Ayush Trivedi said...

^^ Mate, thanks for posting your comment (and I must say that I completely agree with you), but just mind your language. There really is no need to resort to swearing.


Anonymous said...




Anonymous said...

visit the following link and see:


u will see Irfan and his SA lady

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