New coach Chappell bats for vegetarians

Published: Friday, May 27, 2005, 23:53 [IST]
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New Delhi:Australian cricket legend Greg Chappell began his stint as India's national coach with a public plea against killing animals and eating meat, saying the secret of good health was to become a vegetarian.

Chappell, 56, has teamed up with a voluntary group called 'People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA)' to appear in an advertising campaign that promotes veganism -- a diet free of meat, eggs and dairy products.

The advertisement shows a fighting-fit Chappell holding a bat below the tagline -- "Don't settle for less than a century. Go vegan".

"I gave up red meat at the same time as I gave up dairy foods," Chappell said in a statement.

"I had been showing all the symptoms of lactose intolerance. Within days of giving up milk and cheese, these symptoms disappeared."

Chappell wrote in his book 'Health and Fitness' that giving up meat and dairy products in favour of healthier foods like soya and vegetables made him feel stronger and healthier.

"We are the only species of animal on earth that still consumes milk products after being weaned," Chappell wrote.

"To make things worse, we do not even consume our own milk products but get them from another kind of animal. Dairy milk is a perfectly balanced food for calves but for nothing else. It does contain certain nutrients, but it also contains things which do us much more harm than the nutrients do us good."

The PETA release did not say if Chappell intended to convert the Indian players into vegetarians.

Chappell, one of cricket's greatest batsmen, was appointed India's coach earlier this month for a two-year term to succeed New Zealander John Wright.

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