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Home > Cricket > The Cup > Report

Forget the past, says BCCI

Harish Kotian in Mumbai | April 07, 2007 21:41 IST
Last Updated: April 07, 2007 21:48 IST

Forget the past and look towards the future was the BCCI's clear cut signal to the fans and the players as it came out with a number of remedial measures after a detailed review of the team's dismal World Cup showing.

"We have to look to the future. How many times you can do a post mortem? The loss against Bangladesh put us at a disadvantage. It was just one bad day that cost us," treasurer N Srinivasan said after the Board's working committee meeting in Mumbai.

The working committee meeting also considered the suggestions of seven former captains in M A K Pataudi, Chandu Borde, S Venkataraghavan, Sunil Gavaskar, Kapil Dev, Ravi Shastri and Krish Srikkanth.

The Board also made it clear that a few fresh faces may be included for next month's tour to Bangladesh under the leadership of Rahul Dravid.

"The working committee has directed the selection committee to send a young team to Bangladesh under an experienced captain," Srinivasan said.

This is one of the rare occasions in Indian cricket when the working committee has given a brief to the selection committee with regards to the selection of captain and team.

Dravid's leadership has been questioned recently, but the working committee felt he is the best option to lead India. None of the other contenders like Sachin Tendulkar have been in good form recently and it was only right that Dravid was asked to continue to lead.

Asked why Dravid was named the captain for the tour a month in advance, Srinivasan replied: "The defeat in the World Cup led to speculation in the media. So we wanted to send out signal there is no need to panic and for that the president [Sharad Pawar] suggested the working committee to name a captain and they said Dravid."

The BCCI also made it clear that players will henceforth be not allowed to have exclusive contracts with the media. Tendulkar, the senior-most player in India, was then along with Yuvraj Singh served a notice and asked to explain their recent outbursts against Chappell.

Tendulkar had strongly reacted to Chappell's reported comment that senior players acted like a "mafia" and bullied the young players during the World Cup. The former Australian captain had also questioned the master batsman's attitude.

"I've given my heart and soul to Indian cricket for 17 years. No coach has ever mentioned, even in passing, that my attitude was not correct," Tendulkar was quoted as saying in a leading newspaper.

Tendulkar later clarified in a television interview "It is not my nature to get into fight with anyone. If the coach had said [that I had attitude problems], I am hurt. I have no rift with anybody. These are rumours."

The players' contracts have been scrapped, while restrictions have been placed on the number of endorsements. A top player, who failed at the World Cup, is reported to have more than 20 top endorsements under his belt and it is natural that the BCCI wants the team to get its priorities in order.

Also the performance based payment to the players ensures that they will need to keeping winning to earn more.

The players will now get Rs 1 lakh each for a Test/ODI match and get bonus of Rs 3 lakh each for winning a series, a figure yet to be confirmed by the Board.

The Board refused to get into details on reports there was "groupism" in the team recently, adding the reports floated in the media recently were not true.

Ravi Shastri is the team manager for the Bangladesh tour and his task will get easier with the appointment of Venkatesh Prasad and Robin Singh as the bowling and fielding coach respectively. While the India team for the Bangladesh tour may not see a complete overhaul, but be assured that some non-performing seniors may be shown the door permanently.

In a historic change, it was also decided to scrap the present Zonal representation in the Senior and Junior selection ommittees. BCCI will appoint selectors on a full time basis based upon the eligibility criteria which would include stature as a player, selection experience etc. The selectors will be remunerated suitably and appointed for a two year term.

If the suggested changes are anything to go by, the future does look bright for Indian cricket. After the horrors of the World Cup and the blame game that poured out in the public after the World Cup exit, the Board will now be hoping the focus shifts back to the on-field action.

The Cup: The Complete Coverage

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