B~~lore school makes cricket compulsory subject

Published: Monday, July 8, 2002, 23:53 [IST]
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Bangalore: An all-boys school in Bangalore city has become the first in the country to include the nation's favourite sport, cricket, as a part of its syllabus, an official said on Monday. "The sport will be introduced as a full-fledged discipline next week," Father Michael John, principal of St Joseph's Boys High School, said. "We are planning to give 100 marks for theory and 100 marks for practicals as it will be a compulsory subject," he said. John said in the first stage cricket as a discipline would be introduced in the fifth year (aged about 10) and within a couple of years it will carry on up to the 10th grade (about 15). "This school is known for its cricketers. Rahul Dravid studied here," John said referring to the star Indian batsman and vice-captain nicknamed "The Wall" for his classical style of defending. Currently two players from Bangalore, Dravid and leg spinner Anil Kumble, are part of the Indian team touring England. About 160 students studying in the fifth standard will be evaluated every month for their skills such as batting, bowling and fielding. "They will also be assessed for their desire, self-confidence, aggressiveness, emotional stability and mental toughness by a course designed by a former fast bowler from England, Frank Tyson," John said. "Every week there will be two classes held for the students," he said. The Indian Certificate of Secondary Education, an autonomous body, which mostly oversees private education in India, plans to introduce cricket as an academic discipline in schools by 2005. "The school thought of taking a lead in the matter as we already have well-known cricketers and commentators from the state. The body can take this as a pilot project and use it to suit its needs," John said. "We are not looking at producing 11 cricket players for the Indian team but to build good character in a pleasant way," he said.

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