HYDERABAD: Amidst the selection controversy, which has marred the Ranji team’s preparations, the Hyderabad Cricket Association (HCA) has made two good attempts to motivate the side before the start of the season. If last week, South African legend Jonty Rhodes was in the city to give tips on fielding, it was the turn of former chairman of selectors Dilip Vengsarkar on Monday to motivate the Hyderabad boys.
Vengsarkar had a brain-storming session with the Ranji team at the Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium on Monday. “Arshad (HCA president) is a good friend of mine. He asked me to come over here to motivate the boys. So I said, why not? “ the former Test captain said.
A veteran of over 260 first-class matches and over 115 Test matches, 55-year-old Vengsarkar said it was sad that Hyderabad was languishing in the plate division of the Ranji Trophy. “I think it is unfortunate. They are a talented side and I’m confident they will come back strongly. Hyderabad was a great team over the years. They have produced fantastic cricketers like Azharuddin, VVS Laxman, Shivlal and Arshad Ayub. I think it is unfortunate that Hyderabad is playing the plate division,’’ he said.
Vengsarkar, who burst into limelight as a young cricketer in 1975 blasting famous spinners Bishen Bedi, Erapalli Prasanna and others, said it was important for players to stay focused. “Hyderabad should start thinking positive and once you win a match, it will make all the difference. They have to stay positive because they are good cricketers,’’ he advised.
“These boys have to convert talent into performances. I think it is all in the mind. It is a mental game and how they raise the bar is up to them,” he opined and said Hyderabad team should start believing in themselves. “They should make winning a habit and then they will know how to win games.”
The former Test star pointed out that players should learn to play the four-day game more seriously. “It is important to play 90 overs a day. They should have the right strategy and remember every session is important in a four-day game. Concentrate session by session and you can win matches,” he said.