Brijesh Patel.... The king of Domestic cricket

Published: Monday, September 1, 2003, 18:23 [IST]
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Brijesh Patel.... The king of Domestic cricket

You have introduced a new league format this year. Why was the change needed?
What I have observed is the batsmen right from school cricket to college and league cricket, when they come in to bat there are no close in fielders and they are lacking in good defense especially when there is a silly point, slips and short leg etc. And even when they are playing an inner edge or outer edge they get one or two runs, so they are not really pressurized. That is very important when they are playing the longer version. Also, the bowlers are bowling their 10 overs and hoping something will happen, the batsmen will cross bat and get bowled or hit to long on or long off. The art of taking a wicket is forgotten. If a bowler bowls with the slips and close in fielders he will also start thinking of the ways to take a batsman out. This is what was lacking

Why have you not done the same with 4th and 5th div league?
This was just on experimental basis we introduced this format. Based on the success of the top three divisions we will implement for all the divisions. We are also trying to make it a two day league so that there is some more opportunity for the boys to bat longer and for the bowlers to bowl more number of overs.

What is the reaction from the participating clubs?
I think the reaction has been pretty good. The results have been good. More boys are getting bigger scores now. Maybe it will take a year or two by the time the bowlers also start getting the benefits. A lot also depends on the captaincy, field placing, bowling changes and when to declare. Under the new system these are very important to get a result

What prompted you to introduce the Penalty Clause (Docking of Points)?
I thought what is important is that the club secretaries and captains ensure to field an eleven in a league match. They have to take a league match seriously. Even in a place like Nairobi, if you don’t field eleven you are debarred. I don’t see why Bangalore being a major cricketing center should not be able to do the same. I think we need to get strict on that. And we have succeeded.

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