The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Spin greats say no to one-dayers before 17

Calcutta: The ‘brainstorming session’ for the Spinners Wing at the National Cricket Academy has recommended banning limited-overs cricket for players till the under-17 level.

The panel, comprising Bishan Singh Bedi, Bhagwat Chandrasekhar, Erapalli Prasanna and Srinivas Venkatraghavan among others, blamed too much of one-day cricket for the decline in quality spinners and felt that this would ensure the youngsters develop the right technique during their formative years.

Other present at the conclave were Bapu Nadkarni, V.V. Kumar, Rajinder Goel, Padmakar Shivalkar, Shivlal Yadav, Laxman Sivaramakrishnan, Harbhajan Singh and Utpal Chatterjee.

The panel was unanimous in suggesting that the wing needs to spot and nurture talent at different age-groups from under-15 to under-19 levels.

It has also recommended camps with talented spinners in each zone.

The best 20 trainees will then be taken to NCA for fine tuning their skills.

It was decided that a working group would be formed from among the 12 panellists to work for the Spinners Wing. The elite panel may be extended further, informed BCCI president Jagmohan Dalmiya.

It was also decided that the BCCI will use video footage and expert opinion of the ‘legendary four’ as a measure of enhancing the trainees’ skills at NCA. “Though we play in the under-15 World Cup and under-17 Asia Cup, both one-day tournaments, the recommendations have been placed in view of the problems faced by youngsters in picking up the basic skills,” Dalmiya explained. Dalmiya described the discussion as “lively” and said that the recommendations will be put before the Board’s working committee during the end of June.

Among the current crop, the meeting was attended by Harbhajan and Utpal.

The off spinner stressed on the need to provide the sense of security and fair run to a youngster once he makes it to the international stage.

The Bengal left-armer spoke on the follow-up measures in enhancing the spinners’ abilities once he is out of the NCA.

Venkatraghavan felt that “this type of interaction should have been held much earlier” to chalk out a revival plan.

He felt that this initiative should be followed up and, “then only we can get the fruitful results”.

“We have to educate the youngsters how to perform at the highest level,” Venkat added.

Captains’ meet on June 6

The captains and coaches meeting of the Ranji Trophy sides will be held in Mumbai on June 6 to find out their views on the new format for the tournament. BCCI technical committee chairman Sunil Gavaskar will be present at the meeting.

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