Spot-fixing: PCA to involve parents of young cricketers

Mohali: In the wake of spot-fixing scandal that has rocked the IPL, Punjab Cricket Association has decided to invite the parents of its junior cricketers for counseling so that the budding talent does not go astray and fall to the lure of quick money using unfair means.

"We are inviting the parents of U-16 and U-19 cricketers and have interactions with them. While the step will help us take more feedback about the youngsters` activities, the parents, too, will get true picture about the progress/shortcomings of their child," PCA Secretary M P Pandove said on Tuesday.

While admitting that it`s not possible for the PCA or the BCCI to monitor individuals round the clock, Pandove opined such interactions would definitely make them much better players.

"We feel by having interaction with the parents, we can get a better picture about a particular player. Both the sides can then play a role in grooming the player which will help him distinguish clearly between right and wrong," he said.

Pandove, who took part in the BCCI Working Committee`s Emergent Meeting held in Chennai on Sunday, felt the period between the ages of 17 to 20 is crucial for honing the basic cricketing skills of a player.

"Once players have strong fundamentals, they can improvise. Enforcing strict discipline is a must if we are to produce a good bunch of cricketers, who will prove an asset for their state and the country," he said.

He gave the example of former India veteran and Rajasthan Royals captain Rahul Dravid in this regard.

"Take the example of Rahul Dravid. When I was a (national) selector (in mid 1990s), there was lot of demand that Dravid, who initially featured in Test matches, should be allowed to play the one-dayers.

"However, I put my foot down as I felt that Dravid, who has a solid technique, should first play more of the five-day and four-day matches as it will help him perfect his skill. The rest is history and now even after retirement, Rahul is proving his mettle even in the IPL," he said.