Team Kumble spins Wadiyar out

Former India skipper leads his squad to lop-sided victory in KSCA elections

Team Kumble spins Wadiyar out

Victorious: Winners of the KSCA polls. From left: Vijay Bharadwaj (MC member), Roger Binny (Vice-president), Javagal Srinath (Secretary), Anil Kumble  (President), Sadananda Maiya (Vice-president), Venkatesh Prasad (Vice-president) and Tallam Venkatesh (Treasurer) pose for photo on Sunday. DH photo

Anil Kumble and Javagal Srinath, international cricketers of immense repute and integrity, were taking on the might of the group led by incumbent president Srikantadatta Narasimharaja Wadiyar, who had toppled the legendary GR Viswanath to assume power at the KSCA for the first time in 2007.

After surviving some anxious moments, Kumble’s team eventually came out with flying colours, winning 22 of the 24 Managing Committee posts. In fact it was a close call in one of the two seats  they lost. Jawahar Sports Club and Merchants Cricket Club were in a deadlock and the former, from the Wadiyar group, won by spin of coin.

“You can’t expect miracle in a day,” Kumble cautioned even as he awaited the results of a few seats.

“Tomorrow if walk into the stadium, it’s not going to be any different. It’s a great start for us and this is what we wanted to achieve. Our focus was on getting the entire team to win and I’m glad we have achieved that. I would like to thank my foot soldiers, the volunteers who have worked hard for us. We will try to fullfill their aspirations and I think that three years is good enough time to measure our work,” he said addressing the media here on Sunday night.

Kumble faced stiff opposition from Wadiyar who polled 43 votes less than the former India captain. On the other hand Javagal Srinath, who won the race to the secretary’s post, sailed through comfortably, beating his opponent AV Jayaprakash by 245 votes. “The good thing is that unlike the last time, we don’t have a fractured mandate this time around,” pointed out Srinath, who only knew too well the pitfalls of a split verdict. “We didn’t undermine the judgement of the voters. We belonged to neither of the groups and we are on the side of cricket and I think even the voters realised this fact,” he remarked before adding “It will be a new day tomorrow, when we wake up.”

Anil Kumble after his victory in the KSCA polls. DH photo It was a bold move by the cricketers to plunge into the elections and both Srinath and Kumble admitted it was a bit difficult to make the voters buy their vision. “Initially it was a bit of challenge,” said Srinath. “We had to explain our vision to the voters and it was a bit challenging to sell it to them. The vision that we developed from our experiences from the grassroot level, exposure through playing international cricket. Our experience of being in the media, in fact from all walks of life... We made them believe that we will make a difference to Karnataka cricket.

“We will try corporatising cricket and we will also ensure enhancement of the facilities for the life members,” promised the former tearaway.

It’s not that cricketers haven’t tried their hand in administration, but Kumble-Srinath present a different proposition altogether. “Our idea is to first make KSCA a model association by delivering what we had promised,” stated Kumble when asked if other associations in the country would take cue from their move.

“It’s a great challenge. As a player, I used to straightaway go to the ground by passing through the offices, but from tomorrow, I have to stop before going to the ground,” he said while Srinath stressed that all the 24 members of the MC will take responsibility and all of them would work together.

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