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Sight Screen

Wednesday, June 01, 2005

Srinath - the sequel

In a response to my earlier post on bowling coaches, Sriraj suggests that Srinath may not be the ideal pick. He says,
My only problem with Sri would be -- how good was he in producing the away delivery? I can't quite think of Sri producing many of those. Could he then guide our young guys?Hey, I have an excellent suggestion -- why not make Wasim Akram the bowling coach of India? Young, intellligent, immensely talented, is aware of what's heppening in the world of cricket today, successful cricketer, has clashed with a lot of egos, knows how to handle politicking (since he's from the sub continent too). Wasim Akram would be an excellent complement to Greg Chappell
But of course an Akram-Chappell combo would be the dream team for India -- the only problem being that after all the brouhaha in Pakistan when he helped Pathan and Nehra (at the time, if you remember, Javed Miandad all but called him a traitor, a line of thought immediately picked up by sections of the Pak press), Akram recently came up with the announcement that he would coach Pakistan if asked, but never India.
The larger point, about Sri not having a good away delivery (didn't he have a brilliant break-back, though), is not to my mind such a big issue. The coach doesn't have to bowl every ball each bowler in the side bowls (otherwise you'd need one for Bajji, another for Kumble, etc); he merely needs to have the nous to walk the bowlers through their paces and, equally, to be able to use video analysis to work with his wards on preferred lines and lengths, and of ways to bowl to various opposing batsmen.
The only real trouble with Sri when he was playing was stamina -- he would produce four, five blistering overs at the start, but then fade away. In fact, you'd be surprised the number of top flight international batsmen who pick Sri as among the hardest bowlers they've faced.
He's a good candidate, to my mind -- the real question is whether the BCCI will actually go to the expense of adding a bowling coach to India's back room.
PS: This is a 5.30 PM post, updated now because the darn thing wouldn't function earlier. Updates done for the day, back tomorrow with more.


  • I agree that a coach does not have to be a good player himself, but about Srinath, I do feel like he did not learn things fast or atleast he did not adapt quickly. More than a decade in international cricket and he still could not bowl a good slower ball or a yorker. He was as bad as any other bowler we had while bowling at the death.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 22:02  

  • Prem,

    You made a good point -- I remember several players' interviews in Sportstar and other publications that basically pointed out the fact that Sri was one of the hardest players to face. Man, I wish I could name some of them but I used to always wonder why people from so many nations picked Sri as a difficult guy to face. You do make a good point -- refershed my memory on that.


    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 22:21  

  • For odi, players must bowl with control over lines and lengths and yes some planned variations. No coach can plan for waywardness displayed by Balaji and Nehra in particular. When the coach wants a big of aggression, you will find the ball going down the legside for four wides.

    It requires a special talent for this type of bowling. I suggest Bose and Gagandeep Singh given their record.

    So as I see it the bowling coach will not work wonders. A coach can prepare the bowlers like these newbies that I mentioned but what can he do with those who cannot learn or may not have the ability to practice the art?

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 05:27  

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