Chandigarh: Former India fast bowler Venkatesh Prasad wants the phenomenon of ball-tampering in international cricket to be dealt "very seriously". "It is a serious matter (ball-tampering) and it should be dealt very seriously," Prasad, who is the new bowling coach of Kings XI Punjab for the upcoming Indian Premier League, said.
Prasad is of the opinion that ball-tampering is not good for cricket. "Whatever has happened is not good for cricket. It is against the ethics and rule of the game," he said referring to the incident that took place in the third Test between Australia and South Africa.
The former pacer is against using any object for changing the condition of ball. "Using an object to change the condition of ball is not the right tactic," he said. However, Prasad evaded reply on the punishment imposed on Australian players including Steve Smith, David Warner and Cameron Bancroft.
As the bowling coach of Kings XI Punjab, Prasad exuded confidence that the team is capable of going all the way in the tournament. "This season all the teams are very much on the same platform. The new auction that has happened and the kind of combination Kings XI got, the team is outstanding. I strongly believe we can go all the way," he said.
Prasad has got lot of hopes in the new captain R Ashwin. "Ashwin is a very good thinker of the game...He is keen student of the game. In the past decade he has done extremely well for India and the IPL. So, he as a captain and leader of Kings XI Punjab is a huge huge advantage," he said.
Prasad threw his weight behind three players in the franchise from Karnataka. "We have got some exciting talents in K L Rahul, Karun Nair and Mayank Aggarwal, who got an outstanding domestic season. Three of the players hail from Karnataka," he said.
Prasad is also putting his best bet on Yuvraj Singh. "We all know what he (Yuvraj) is capable of doing...On his day he can take any team any opposition...He is an outstanding player," he said.
The former Indian medium pacer is of the opiniun that Yuvraj will be an inspiration to the younger lot. Prasad said that Kings XI have a good bowling line-up. "We have got Barinder Sran, who bowls very well and brings variation, left arm spinner Mohit Sharma, experienced R Ashwin," he said besides foreign players.
For Prasad, Afghanistan spinner Mujeeb Ur Reham will be a player full of surprises in the IPL. "Mujeeb is sort of a mystery," he said.