| Vinod Kambli and Yuvraj Singh in the city for a double-wicket meet on Friday. Picture by Pradip Sanyal
Calcutta: With Australian Bruce Reid close to claiming the post of Team India bowling coach, albeit for a short-term, former India quick Venkatesh Prasad feels the job should have gone to someone from the sub-continent.
“If we at all need a bowling coach, it should be from this part of the world,” Prasad said during his visit to the city for a double wicket tournament organised by McDowell at the CC&FC.
Other internationals taking part were Syed Saba Karim, Yuvraj Singh, Vinod Kambli, Sanjay Bangar, Salil Ankola, Leander Paes and Devang Gandhi.
Tata Steel, represented by Saba Karim and Devang, won the tournament beating Sanjay Bangar and Rohan Bhargav’s Eveready in the final.
“It’s always better to have someone who has bowled on a regular basis in these conditions and knows the psyche of the Indian bowlers,” Prasad said.
But the paceman feels Reid won’t be a bad choice in Australia, provided he furnishes “inside information on the Aussies”.
Prasad, who was with the Indian team when it last toured Australia, in 1999-2000, feels the bowlers this time have the talent to make a good attack, though they are a bit short on experience. “We’ve a good attack, but it’s important to have some more experience in this sort of a difficult tour.”
This is where Prasad feels he could have come in, lending the necessary experience to the line-up. “I’ve been bowling well of late. Even in the last Ranji Trophy game, I took five wickets.”
Prasad admitted he was disappointed to be left out but is backing himself. “I’m keeping my fingers crossed and putting in the effort. It can be the tri-series itself,” a hopeful Prasad said.
Getting back to India’s chances Down Under, the Bangalorean said: “The batsmen should put 300-350 on the board and give the bowlers something to bowl at.”
Right on target, since it has been the much-vaunted batting line-up that let the Indian team down against Australia in the tri-series final in Calcutta on November 18.
Yuvraj, who was a member of that team, feels they should learn from the mistakes made during the match. “The way we batted that day was absolutely criminal. I’m ready to take any criticism for my batting in the final,” Yuvraj said.
The left-hander didn’t hide his disappointment on being left out of the Test team in Australia. “It’s very disappointing to get the axe after playing only one Test. But now I’ll put my mind into the Ranji Trophy matches and get back into the team as soon as possible.”
The Punjab batsman believes Australia will be a tough tour, though “we have a good line-up”.
Another hopeful, Bangar said he would fight his way back into the team. “Before the 2002-03 New Zealand series, I was averaging around 40 in Tests. I think I’ve paid a little too much for one bad series,” he quipped.