Primary role of NCA is to be a feeder system, says Patil

Primary role of NCA is to be a feeder system, says Patil

Primary role of NCA is to be a feeder system, says Patil

 The former India star also discussed coaching manual, his predecessor Dav Wahtmore and what his style of functioning was going to be. Excerpts:

On his job: This is a huge responsibility and I hope I can use all my experience at the NCA. But at the same time, it’s not just one man’s job, it should be collective effort. Under Dav Whatmore, the NCA has seen tremendous growth and I hope to continue the good work. But as I said, the faculty, which has worked under Dav, will also be with me and I am sure we all can take NCA to greater heights. I’m new to the NCA but there are people Bharat Arun (bowling coach), Dr Kinjal Suratwala  (head of Sports Science and Coach Education), Paul Close (Physiotherapist) and Paul Chapman (Strength and Conditioning coach) who have contributed a lot. I hope they continue to do the good work.

On the academy’s goal: The prime role of the NCA is to be a feeder system for the national team. What India needs is enough bench strength. Like in the current series, many Australian players have got injured so that is when NCA can step in and send players should India also face a situation like that. Keeping the fringe players ready and housing the reserve force is NCA’s prime job along with grooming players from the under-15 level.

On frequent injuries to players: I think these days there is too much importance given to players’ injuries because cricket has become bigger in the country. During our time in 1980s, we played with injuries. Even Sunil Gavaskar, Kapil Dev and myself all played with injuries. It’s part and parcel of every cricketer’s career.

On the coaching manual: Look, you can’t learn cricket by just reading. Though the new manual will be beneficial to the regional academies, what is more important is practical lessons. At NCA, we will create an equal balance between the two.
On his style of functioning: Everyone has a different working style, and I have one too. But what is important at the end of the day is to be effective. Having said that I’m still warming up to my new role. It’s just been two days, I’m learning the system.
On his experience:  I have more than 15 years of coaching experience behind me and I’ve learnt so much. I started as a coach with Madhya Pradesh, and then India A, Kenya and Oman too. As for coaching youngsters, I have coached under-15 teams and also been involved with Mumbai schools, so that shouldn’t be a problem.

On faculty at the NCA: The faculty we have is good enough. It’s for the BCCI to decide, I have no role to play in it. And as far Venkatesh Prasad wanting to serve at the NCA, why just him, any former cricketer interested can come here. But it will be solely at the BCCI discretion.

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