The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
Email This Page
Kapil is BCCI’s Imran-counter
- Appointment first Indian step in the psychological battle ahead of tour
PCB got the Imran advantage…
…so, BCCI brought in Kapil

Calcutta: The actual action begins less than a fortnight from now, but the Boards have launched a psychological war aimed at giving either Sourav Ganguly or Inzamam-ul Haq the advantage.

In fact, a senior Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) official has acknowledged that appointing Kapil Dev as fast bowling consultant for the preparatory camp here largely had one purpose: Countering Imran Khan’s interaction with the Pakistan probables.

Both are World Cup-winning captains and enjoyed much success as top-bracket allrounders.

The official, who didn’t wish to be quoted, told The Telegraph: “Obviously, no consultant — or, even coach — can make a difference in three days (duration of the camp)… Kapil’s appointment, therefore, should be seen as a psychological counter… We had to match Imran’s impact.”

Incidentally, the Kapil-announcement came a mere 24 hours after Imran’s visit to the Gaddafi and the National Cricket Academy, which is a stone’s throw away. The BCCI’s own camp begins on March 7.

Apparently, president Jagmohan Dalmiya zeroed-in on Kapil once he realised Imran’s presence had made a huge splash and was the talking point. The ‘deal’ with Kapil was quickly struck and, then, the Sourav Ganguly-John Wright duo effortlessly sold the idea.

One understands the likes of Sunil Gavaskar would also have had a role had the camp been longer. As of now, there are no plans to counter whatever else the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) may unleash.

According to the PCB’s schedule, Wasim Akram will be having his session with the probables on Wednesday.

“Look, Kapil is a big enough name… Moreover, getting others over during those three days could cause plenty of confusion and not produce any benefit,” the senior official explained.

That’s a sensible argument as the exercise may have been termed gimmicky.

Email This Page