Aug 27, 2013
Indian fast bowlers could get a chance to train under legendary Australian paceman Glenn McGrath if a reported deal between the MRF Pace Foundation, where McGrath is the director, and the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) falls in place.
The Asian Age reported that the MRF Pace Foundation, which has contributed to the success of fast bowlers around the world, might revive its ties with the BCCI again. The BCCI had snapped relations with the foundation for unknown reasons. Thus, BCCI’s contracted players could not train at the foundation located in Chennai.
However, with the National Cricket Academy (NCA) involved in a legal tussle and facing a shortage of coaches, the pace foundation’s head coach M Senthilnathan made a presentation to the BCCI earlier this month. “We will be more than happy if it happens. We will be happy to work with the Indian bowlers. Nothing has been put on paper and I can’t confirm it at the moment,” said Senthilnathan.
If a deal is made between the BCCI and MRF and a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) is signed, Indian pacers will be able to train at the foundation again, and can also turn up for rehabilitation.
McGrath, who took 563 wickets in 124 Tests and 381 scalps in 250 One-Day Internationals (ODIs) for Australia, was all praise for the foundation. “I was here at the academy back in 1992 and I learnt a lot under [former director] Dennis Lillee. That’s the reason I picked up this project as it helps the up and coming fast bowlers. The technology, the nets and the gym you get here is world-class.
“What MRF offers in terms of facilities is incredible and it helps pacers around the globe. A lot of youngsters from Australia come here for training and have benefited. The MRF Pace Foundation has a lot to offer for Indian bowlers,” said McGrath.
A source told the newspaper that the deal is imminent. “It’s true that the Board has had discussions with MRF Pace Foundation. The BCCI has released a lot of coaches in NCA to cut costs and there are not sufficient people to run the show in Bengaluru.
“MRF on the other hand has excellent facilities for fast bowlers. Even for rehabilitation it is well equipped with right persons and trainers. A deal is imminent.”