Vidarbha colts make up for Ranji disappointment with U23 CK Nayudu title
Written by Vishal Menon
| New Delhi |

Updated: March 16, 2020 12:31:52 am

With the U23 CK Nayudu Trophy win, Vidarbha collected their ninth home trophy within the final two years.

After beating hosts Madhya Pradesh to clinch the U-23 CK Nayudu Trophy in Indore on Saturday, the Vidarbha staff received right into a huddle for a selfie and an enormous cake was minimize earlier than the gamers packed their luggage and left to catch a flight to Nagpur. One would have anticipated an even bigger celebration, contemplating this was Vidarbha’s solely title this season. On their manner again, coach Trevor Gonsalves and Vidarbha Cricket Association (VCA) vice-president Prashant Vaidya had been busy chalking out a street map for the subsequent season. This, in essence, summed up Vidarbha cricket — low-key, understated however pushed and passionate.

This win however, it’s been a season of disappointments for Vidarbha. Their Ranji Trophy staff did not make it a hat-trick of titles, and even did not qualify for the knockouts this time round. Their U-23 one-day staff did not progress past the quarterfinals, happening to Chandigarh in a rain-affected encounter. So, rather a lot was using for them within the CK Nayudu Trophy, and Vidarbha gave a terrific account of themselves, registering eight outright wins and three attracts from 11 matches. By successful the long-format U-23 event, Vidarbha collected their ninth trophy within the final two years, thus reaffirming their standing as a home powerhouse with an abundance of rising expertise.

From permitting U-23 gamers to staff up with the senior staff through the low season and roping in army personnel for lectures on psychological fortitude, to asking gamers to come back for nets at 2 am, the assume tank confirmed they had been prepared to assume out of the field of their planning.

Perhaps this was the explanation why the colts managed to stage monumental comebacks from crunch conditions. Captain Atharva Taide cited the instance of their win over Rajasthan in a league match. “We were bundled out for 66 while batting first on a greentop in Jaipur. Despite that, we displayed the tenacity to stage a comeback and register an outright win.”

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Gonsalves is extraordinarily happy with this title, however like his gamers and different teaching employees, extraordinarily measured. “This is something that we had set out to achieve 10 months ago. It’s our meticulous planning and preparation that has helped us get here,” he informed The Indian Express. Back in May 2019, Vaidya gave Gonsalves two clear directives: First, make sure the U-23 squad wins the CK Nayudu Trophy. Secondly, assemble a pool of gamers able to play Ranji Trophy. The coach succeeded on each fronts.

“While planning for this season, (Prashant) Vaidya had told me that the senior Ranji team would need a steady supply of players from the junior level. That’s exactly what happened, with seven players making their first-class debut this year. These include pacers Yash Thakur, Darshan Nalkande and Aditya Thakare, along with batsmen Atharva Taide, Anirudh Chowdhury, Mohit Kale, and Siddhesh Vat,” Gonsalves defined.

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All these gamers made the step up to first-class cricket primarily based on their constant performances on the U-23 stage. Thakare, with 47 scalps from seven matches, completed as the best wicket-taker on this event; others like Vat contributed over 1,00zero runs, whereas captain Taide had in extra of 800 runs to his credit score.

Gonsalves insisted that every one these gamers have emerged from a scientific channel that’s working to unearth expertise from the districts. Vidarbha being a comparatively small space, the VCA has to scout in solely 10 districts below its jurisdiction. “We have a channelised programme working in the districts. If any player manages to impress us, we bring him to the VCA academy in Nagpur and train them. We have a convenor for each district and there are committees under them. Under them are the selectors. VCA also has a coach’s academy in Nagpur, where coaches are trained and sent to these districts to improve the techniques of players,” he famous.

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There’s the Guzder League, which additionally serves as a platform to guage upcoming expertise. “Guzdher Trophy is played along division lines. These are essentially clubs affiliated with the VCA who compete in three divisions. Then there are a host of other local tournaments that are being conducted in the names of former cricketers,” he added.

Perhaps the largest cause for the seamless transition made by these U-23 cricketers to the Ranji Trophy was the plan put in place by Vaidya, in session with Gonsalves and senior staff coach Chandrakant Pandit. “During the off-season — between June-September — we clubbed members of the Ranji Trophy team with the U-23 squad into a single pool. They trained together and spent time discussing ways to improve their game. It was a hectic camp, scheduled from 9am to 6pm. This stint helped them enormously,” Gonsalves opined.

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Such an arduous coaching regime was interspersed with army personnel giving staff lectures on psychological fortitude and nets session at 2 am at VCA’s indoor academy. “The purpose of this exercise was not to teach them cricket or fine-tune their techniques but to make them mentally tough and prepare them to come out and bat under any circumstances. For instance, you may be a middle-order batsman batting at No.5 or No.6. But in a four-day match, you can lose three quick wickets and suddenly you would be required to bat. So, this was done to make these guys be prepared for any eventuality.”

Once the 15-member U-23 squad was chosen, care was taken to make sure the gamers received ample relaxation and their weight-reduction plan was additionally monitored by the staff physios. As per the diktat from the affiliation, gamers’ telephones had been confiscated on match days to maintain them away from distractions. All these measures helped them keep targeted and be in the appropriate mind set. In the midst of the congratulatory messages and platitudes he’s acquired during the last two days, one despatched by a participant’s mum or dad caught Gonsalves’s consideration. It learn: “Itne saal se jo hum nahi kar paaya, woh aap kar diye. Thank you.”

More than the trophies, it’s such messages that gave the coach a way of achievement.

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