At MAK Pataudi memorial lecture today the former Indian captain Rahul Dravid said that BCCI should formulate a blueprint for junior cricket in India and it was imperative to remove illegal actions at the junior level for the development of the game.
“When I hear a under-19 bowler reported for suspected bowling action, it upsets me deeply. What were the coaches doing until he reached that age? Did his faulty action begin at 10 years old? Did the next bunch of coaches just let it go because he was getting wickets and winning them matches,” Dravid said.
“When at 19, an eager hard working boy who could have played the junior world cup is reported for suspect action he is left correcting his action. These short term goals achieved through shortcuts hurt the child because we as adults turn a blind eye.
“It is a similar emphasis on short-term results that has led to the issue of overage players in junior matches. The entire exercise begins when a coach alters a player’s date of birth to allow him to play at a local event.
“We are not doing enough to attract youngsters and thus losing out on talent. Cricket is not the number one sport for youngster anymore. A top sports equipment company told me that the sales of cricket equipment have gone down. I think we need to have a blueprint for junior cricket in India. We need to find a way to guide out coaches. There has to be well-explained guidelines,” he said.
Dravid also said that BCCI should do more to attract youngsters to cricket and give them enough exposure to playing cricket in India.
“We may not be doing enough to attract youngsters and thus losing out on talent. Cricket is not the number one sport for youngster anymore.
Rahul Dravid talked about how young cricketers are giving the sports too early and parents are putting pressure on the young cricketers.
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