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Sight Screen

Tuesday, June 07, 2005

New broom

Good morning all -- first up in the morning, I take back all I said about preferring Tom Moody over Greg Chappell.
Not because the big news of the day is that Chappell has asked for a biomechanics expert and an expert in kinesiology as part of the national team's back-room staff, or because he seems to want a more hands-on involvement of a sports psychologist, but because the BCCI has actually taken the request on board and seems set to give Chappell what he wants.
Perhaps this is where Chappell scores over Moody -- he is too big a name, and a voice, for the BCCI to ignore; a younger, less high-profile coach like Moody would not have been able to get support staff just for the asking. And if you think that is just part of my routine board-bashing, think back to the era of John Wright, and remember how the BCCI treated him.
I remember when Wright, during his early days with the side, asked that the team be provided a tech support person, whose job would be to store on laptop the live feeds of all games, and to analyze them, break them down, and in general provide the team with the video-analysis capabilities Wright believed the players needed.
The request was made, and greeted with official silence. I happened to run into then board secretary JY Lele, and asked him about it. His response? 'Arre yaar, yeh kya tamasha hai -- why do cricketers want a laptop? Bat hai, ball hai -- ask the coach to teach them to play with that, woh kya laptop leke computer game kelega?'
How times have changed! Now a Chappell asks for a kinesiology expert -- and it's an odds-on bet no one in the current administration has a clue what that is -- and within hours of asking, the BCCI goes yes sir, sure sir, give us the details sir and we will do it sir.
While reading this news story, I found myself unconsciously crossing my fingers, muttering 'God, hope the honeymoon lasts'.
And then, towards the end of the story, I found this:
The BCCI also reached an agreement on Chappell's media commitments, which was the lone unresolved issue. Nair said he could "express his thoughts and expressions" through newspaper columns or news channels. However, he added that Chappell will "not be permitted to leak out any team secret".

Fingers duly uncrossed -- no worries, guys, the honeymoon will last. Because Chappell is shrewd enough to use his media column as a weapon of last resort, if he ever needs to take issue with the administration -- and that possibility alone is enough to ensure that the BCCI gives Chappell what he wants, as long as he delivers on the results.
it last


  • You're right this was exactly the case for Chappell. While on pure technical terms Moody may have been a better choice as a coach, Chappell will be one who the board can't lightly brush under the carpet. He's not going to run off his frustration at the end of every training day as Wright was said to have done. He didn't have the leverage to get what he wanted from the BCCI. Hopefully these intial moves are a sign that Greg does.

    By Blogger Gopalblog, at 10:52  

  • Prem,

    I have to insert this. One main reason why I follow N. American sports is to try to observe the good aspects of running a sport, into cricket. I went to my favorite team's website and am copying and pasting their coaching staff. Plz take a look.

    Coaching Staff (Atlanta Braves)
    Position Name
    Manager Bobby Cox
    Bench Coach Pat Corrales
    Third Base Fredi Gonzalez
    First Base Glen Hubbard
    Pitching Coach Leo Mazzone
    Hitting Coach Terry Pendelton
    Bullpen Coach Bobby Dews

    Why do I do this? Easy -- give Greg Chappell all that he wants. Sometime back, we were having a discussion on having a bowling coach for India, on your blog. Pay special attention to Leo Mazzone, the pitching coach of the Braves. This guy is a miracle worker with pitchers who come from the minor leagues and want to play with the big boys of the major leagues. Prem, I want to highlight on guys like Leo (he is a legend of his own in the Atlanta area) because India needs guys like him (we had discussed someone like Wasim Akram being the bowling coach of India). We need the biomechanical experts, the physios, the sports psychiatrist consultants, we need all that we can get to have the number one team in the world. BCCI has all the financial resources to afford this -- we must go all armed, leave no goddamn stone unturned. We have the talent, we just need to optimally utilize it.


    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 11:11  

  • This is going to be fun to watch - a hard-nosed, shrewd and intelligent man going up against the bureaucracy. Chappell seems to be in the unique position of being able to make a difference.


    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 11:15  

  • You bet Chappell may get what he wants than anyone else... He is a hard nosed guy.. Isn't he?

    Perhaps Ian Chappell comes close to him or probably betters him at that no nonsense approach...

    Its all about respect.. atleast in India.. here people recognize the fact that you are great and give in.. in Moody's case.. whatever be his coaching credentials.. it would tough to convince our officials that he is good (forget great)...

    By Blogger Vivhyd, at 11:50  

  • I agree with all of you. Prem, I am keeping my fingers crossed like you. Crossed really, really tight. The expectation is killing me now. Last year 2003-2004 (Australia in Australia and Pakistan in Pakistan) proved tome that India can garner glory. Now they have to make it a habit.

    Chappell is only infusing modern thought into a very old game. Every sport has learnt to specialize, every sportsman has used science, sports psychology, biometrics, etc. to gain championships. Look at what Lance Armstrong does, or every baseball team in the US, or the world champion football sides, or the world champion swimmers, or Tiger Woods, or Australia in cricket.

    I'll use your words Prem, "God, I hope this honeymoon lasts."

    By Blogger AM, at 15:30  

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