Members of the Indian team management have expressed their displeasure over the presence of foreign analysts and coaches in the Indian Premier League. Many coaches of IPL teams are also a part of the support staff of various national teams which enables them to understand the game of Indian players.
The finals of the Indian Premier League is due to be played on May 12, following which would be the World Cup in England and Wales that has been scheduled to start from May 30. Many Indian players are being watched closely by the members of the support staff of various other national teams which would compete with India in the quadrennial event.
For example, Shikhar Dhawan would be India’s opening batsman for the World Cup and in the IPL, and he is being coached by Australia’s national assistant coach Ricky Ponting. Sriram Somayajula is an analyst for DC as well as the Sri Lankan national team. Other Indian Test players Prithvi Shaw, Rishabh Pant, and Ishant Sharma are all a part of the side and the management believes that this does not bode well for the national team.
“Imagine the extent to which they understand Dhawan the cricket. What clicks for him… what doesn’t... It’s clearly unhealthy. Rishabh, Prithvi, Shreyas — see the amount of analysis they’re being able to gather,” said the Indian team, reported TOI.
Some members of the team gave another example of Kings XI Punjab analyst Prasanna Agoram, who also works in the same capacity with Cricket South Africa.
“The amount of work Prasanna has put in with the South African national team is tremendous. We got to know about it first hand when we visited South Africa last year. Now, this guy gets to spend two months right here in the Indian domestic circuit just weeks before he’ll accompany South Africa to the World Cup. This just doesn’t sound correct,” they explained.
“We don’t think it’s fine for Australia’s national assistant coach to be spending time with the Indian team opener just weeks ahead of a World Cup campaign, or even otherwise with a franchise that includes four India Test cricketers. Of course, the IPL’s a free market but some lines have to be drawn,” they added.
The players are disgruntled to such extent that they are contemplating to approach the BCCI (Board of Control for Cricket in India) or the Committee of Administrators (CoA) right away.
As per the policies of BCCI, Indian players and coaches are not allowed to work in different franchise based leagues around the world even if they are not picked up by any franchise in the cash-rich league. The Indian camp stressed that if the league is a free market then even coaches from India should be allowed to work overseas and that it should be a two-way model.
“The BCCI has its policies. It doesn’t matter who put them in place – whether it was the old establishment or the Supreme Court or this present administration (COA) but the point is, IPL doesn’t have a uniform policy in place. There can’t be apples and oranges,” remarked the Indian camp.
India A coach Rahul Dravid and India batting coach Sanjay Bangar, among others, are not permitted to associate themselves with any IPL franchise as that would result in a conflict of interest. Few team members were clearly not amused when Sourav Ganguly had stated that Ponting, his colleague at DC, should be made the coach of the Indian national team.
“That’s definitely not conflict, right? Conflict is when Rahul Dravid associates himself with a franchise while working with the junior Indian national team. That’s how weird Indian cricket administration and its policies have become,” said two junior India players who were coached by Dravid.
Pravin Amre works as a scout for DC, thereby, he is restricted from working with any domestic team or even at the National Cricket Academy (NCA). The management felt that eventually this would result in a loss for Indian cricket.
“If players like Dravid, Tendulkar, Ganguly and Laxman are not associated with IPL, whose loss is it? Look at Pravin Amre. He’s one of India’s finest batting coaches. Just because he wants to keep his IPL job, he can’t work with any other state team or NCA. But Tom Moody can coach Sunrisers and head the Caribbean Premier League too. Why can’t the BCCI have a uniform policy? If Sanjay Bangar, who is the assistant Team India coach, can’t work with IPL, then so shouldn’t a foreign (assistant) coach. Simple. Isn’t that how it works globally in, let’s say, football?” they concluded.
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