Source: The Hitavada      Date: 11 Sep 2017 11:32:03

CHIEF coach Ravi Shastri has given voice to what the players may hesitate to state. He has fervently appealed to the Committee of Administrators to plan the scheduling of future cricket series in such a manner that the cricketers and the support staff get enough rest and breathing time between two series. Shashtri has cited the example of the Australian and English cricket boards in scheduling their fixtures and ensuring adequate rest to the players and their support staff.

This has been a long grouse and demand among Indian cricketers. But unfortunately the bosses in the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) had never given a serious thought to such requests. The International Cricket Council (ICC) too exploited this greed of the BCCI and planned schedules which kept the Indian cricket team busy all the year round. 

It is educative to see how foreign cricket boards view the Indian cricket team. Recently the South African cricket board had stated that their finances were in doldrums but were optimistic about balancing their balance-sheet when the Indian cricket team comes visiting their shores. So every other cricket board in the world sees the Indian cricket team as a milch cow which can churn out tonnes of money for them.

These boards may not hope to make much money through viewership in their countries. But an Indian tour ensures that there is overwhelming TV viewership in India and earnings from advertising and TV broadcast rights. Thus even before the gates of the stadium are opened, the fixture involving Indian team is already a sell-out.

The Indian cricket board has exploited this madness of the Indian people for the Indian cricket team to the hilt,without giving a thought to the mental and physical strain it was putting on the players through constant shuttling between venues and countries without even the time to unpack their suitcases. In the last one year the Indian cricket team has played so much cricket that it is astounding to imagine how the players manage to cope up with their mental and physical strain and the heavy toll their bodies take.

True that, as of now Indian cricket is in an enviable position, which hardly any other country can boast, as it has lot of reserve talent for replacement. Even then the core of the team remains all the time constant, playing all the three formats without break. It is this core of the team, like the captain, the wicket-keeper, some batsmen and bowlers, which is heavily burdened all through. Though there is no denying that the Indian cricket board is the finest paymaster for the cricketers, unfortunately, they are being used as money-spinning machines.