Is lack of proper supporting staff hurting Vidarbha teams?
NAGPUR: Eight trophies since January 29, 2017. No other association in the country has won so many BCCI trophies than Vidarbha. After performing so well consistently, the teams would have hoped for better guidance, instead almost all Vidarbha teams lack proper support staff.
If sources are to be believed, none of the Vidarbha teams has assistant or bowling coaches. The senior team’s bowlers got the guidance of Subroto Bannerjee when they won their maiden Ranji and Irani Trophies in 2017-18.
However, since Bannerjee — who is now the bowling coach at National Cricket Academy in Bengaluru — and Vidarbha Cricket Association parted ways, head coach Chandrakant Pandit is performing the dual role.
Besides, none of the Vidarbha teams, right from Under-14 to Under-23 have video analysts too. “Isn’t Pandit overworked? We have some talented bowlers who are doing well but there’s nobody to guide them. VCA Academy doesn’t have any bowling coach right now. When teams are doing so well, they should get more guidance and better facilities. At present, it’s not happening,” a former Vidarbha player, who doesn’t wish to be named, told TOI.
Pacer Rajneesh Gurbani was one of the architects of Vidarbha’s victory in 2017-18. He was was included in India ‘A’ same season. However, Gurbani lost his place due to lack of guidance. “There was no one to guide him when he needed that support the most. Bowling coach is a specialized job. While I am not questioning Pandit’s credentials, a former pacer bowler should guide our current young pacers,” he added.
Vidarbha won the maiden BCCI trophy when its U-16 team emerged winner in Vijay Merchant Trophy in 2016-17. Vidarbha then won two back to back Ranji and Irani Trophies in 2017-18 and 2018-19. Vidarbha Under-19 team emerged winner in Cooch Behar Trophy 2017-18 and won the Vinoo Mankad One-day Trophy the following year. The U-19 team also emerged runners-up in Cooch Behar Trophy in 2018-19. Vidarbha Under-23 won the Under-23 One-day Trophy and reached the semifinals in Col CK Nayudu Trophy last year.
Except for Under-19 team — which had both assistant coach and video analyst — none of the teams had video analysts last year. “This year, Under-19 team neither has assistant coach nor the video analyst. The officials should at least provide these basic facilities,” the source said.
The VCA recently conducted the BCCI Level-1 coaching course. It also runs the ‘O’ Level coaching course for the beginners. However, none of the former players have been placed so far with any of the teams.
“It’s not easy coaching Under-14 to U-23 players. You need to communicate them a lot with proper analysis. The technology always helps and saves the time. These players are our supply line. We are into the modern day cricket where you need to have proper facilities and right personnel to do the job. Top teams like Karnataka get proper facilities and that’s why they doing consistently well for last eight-nine years,” the source added.
The source said it’s VCA’s loss that they aren’t utilizing the services of these trained coaches. “If four five former players would have been placed, they could have learned a lot under the likes of Pandit, Usman Ghani and Trevor Gonsalves.
“If the association is working so hard to train these coaches, why isn’t it’s taking the advantage of these players. Besides, when would you groom local coaches? It’s time VCA should think about it,” the source added.