India may not opt for bowling coach

Published: Sunday, May 29, 2005, 23:53 [IST]
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New Delhi:Indian cricket team is unlikely to have a bowling coach although its new coach Greg Chappell is reportedly in favour of having a fielding coach.

Former Australian captain Chappell, who was recently appointed the team's coach in succession to New Zealand's John Wright, is expected to take over from June 15.

Sources in the BCCI today said that there was no proposal to have a bowling coach as that would lead to dual authority. However, the question could be considered at a later stage if Chappell pressed for it.

The sources said that Chappell had given faint indications that having a fielding coach for the team would be a good idea.

The former Test batsman, in his presentation to the Cricket Board's six-member committee during his interview, had stressed the importance of developing versatile fielders with commitment to not give away 'safe shot' singles.

Chappell has stated his objective in the role of India coach as to take the team to number two in Test rankings in the next 18 months and improve their current ODI ranking of eight in the lead up to the 2007 World Cup in the Caribbean.

Of course, challenging Australia for the title of World Champions is the ultimate goal.

In his vision for Indian cricket, Chappell sees captain Sourav Ganguly, Sachin Tendulkar, Rahul Dravid, Anil Kumble, Virender Sehwag, Harbhajan Singh and V V S Laxman as the 'core group' entrusted with the task of guiding those players who are in the 'learning to compete' stage.

The 56-year old Chappell also stresses the need to instill an even more aggressive and confident demeanour in the back-bench players.

"Great teams are a result of positive peer pressure motivating team members to higher levels of adaptation and self-confidence," Chappell says.

He sees Sehwag as "future champion and team leader" and believes that Yuvraj Singh, Mahendra Singh Dhoni, Gautam Gambhir and Ambati Rayudu as next generation Indian batting talents.

In his opinion, it is the bowling department that is worrisome.

Chappell wants the promising youngsters like Irfan Pathan and Lakshmipathy Balaji to learn to bowl around the experienced Anil Kumble.

And sorting out the issue of Harbhajan's bowling action is paramount.

"Given his attitude and youth, it is proposed that managing this situation positively is of the highest importance," Chappell says.

Australia, Chappell says, have an overall aim of getting 20 wickets in Test cricket and chasing 300 plus targets in the shorter version of the game.

To achieve the two goals, they rely on fast scoring, long batting line-up, 'situationally aware' bowlers and a captain flexible in his tactics and with ability to come up with 'real time' solutions within a broad strategic framework.

Above all, the ability to convert winning positions into advantage is crucial area the Indian team has to work on.

"Facilitating the group learning to seize the moment will be critical to moving beyond the current mindset," says Chappell.

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